Enter your keyword

In the era of online retail, the box matters

In the era of online retail, the box matters

I love when a package comes to my door. I do a lot of online shopping. A lot. Groceries, household goods, clothes, home goods, pets food, toys, wine, it all comes to my door. It’s amazing. If you didn’t want to, you would never have to step foot inside a store again.

Why do I get so excited? There’s of course the obvious reason that there’s a box addressed to me (yay Amazon Prime!) but there’s more to it. These days, retailers are clued into the fact that the packaging of the product matters. It’s no longer acceptable to throw product into a blah brown box and slap a shipping label onto it. No, retailers are realizing that consumers want more. They want the packaging to be a part of the experience of the actual product.

If you are an Amazon Prime member, you will immediately recognize the bright blue and black packing tape. A really good article on racked.com discusses how Net-a-Porter, a high-end online retailer, packages its goods in a signature black box tied in black ribbon. This type of packaging stays in line with the type of goods it sells. A customer who orders a $2000 bag might want a higher-end unboxing experience.

In the age of social media, product packaging is critical. Some retailers, like Warby Parker, have crafted their packaging such that it can become a backdrop for customer Instagram photo shoots. This is ridiculously smart. Customers are a retailers’ best source of referrals. When happy customers share their experiences – product + packaging – it sells more product.

The racked.com article cites a 2015 Dotcom Distribution study that says: 61% of online shoppers think pretty packaging makes a brand look “upscale,” and 4 in 10 are more likely to recommend a product to a friend based solely on branded packaging.

So there you have it. You can actually increase sales by focusing on your product’s packaging. Luckily RR Donnelley has a number of ways to help retailers create the total package. Learn more by contacting me.