How to choose the right e-commerce packaging?

The latest European e-commerce report published by the Ecommerce Europe association shows some very interesting facts about e-commerce in Europe:

  • Online shopping has grown 176% in the last 5 years
  • The total online sales forecasted in Europe for 2016 are ca. 510 billion euro
  • 2.5 million European jobs are related to E-commerce
  • There are more than 750.000 online businesses in Europe
  • The share of e-commerce in European GPD is 2.59%
  • 43% of Europeans shopped online in 2015
  • 8% of total retail goods in Europe are sold online
  • In 2015 around 4.2 billion parcels were shipped in Europe

It is clear that e-commerce is changing the way many European companies, from small e-shops to large internet retailers, do business. And this affects specially the way companies ship their goods to locations around the world.  For e-retailers in Europe is crucial to ensure that their customers are satisfied with the products their order on-line. The company reputation depends highly on how their products are delivered to their customers.

Finding the right packaging for your goods can be difficult. The below guide shows you a  few tips on how to ensure that the packaging materials you user are the right ones for your products in terms of security, costs, storage and customer satisfaction.

Damage to your product reputation
Your company’s reputation is very much tied into your packaging. However,the costs associated with damages can sometimes be overlooked by business owners and in many cases these costs far outstrip the costs of just replacing the damaged goods themselves.
Think of the time and money for administration, additional packing time, and repeated shipping and storage costs and then of course  the money lost from unsatisfied customers who may not buy from you again.
There are a number of factors which cause packages to become damaged, these include stability issues (by pallet or as a unit), repetitive vibration resulting from air or road shipments, impact damages from mishandling and stress cracking from long term storage combined with compressive conditions. 

Minimise storage costs
Good packaging uses only the minimal amount of material needed to get the contents to the customer in perfect condition. Using the right size and specification of packaging for your product should be your first thought – the less fill-in material and space your stock takes up, the cheaper your warehouse storage and delivery costs will be. You should also take into account how your product’s packaging will need to function from its creation to its consumption, how will it be delivered, how will it be displayed in shops etc… 

If you want to improve cash flow within your company, you could consider outsourcing the storage of your products and the packaging to a third party, who will have local distribution centres and full packaging management services, ensuring peace of mind that your packaging needs are being met by a team of experts. 

Use the right packaging for your product
Automation of your packaging needs could help you improve your business’ throughput and free up some manpower for a more constructive use. Using standard sized packaging for your product range will also ensure you keep your packaging and storage costs down. Part of the set up costs for package production can also be reduced by using just standard sized packaging wherever possible, as unusual shapes will mean a new cutter will have to be produced. 

Ensure customer satisfaction
Providing well-packaged goods will build your business’ reputation with customers. However an excessive amount of packaging will tarnish your reputation, as customers worry about the environmental costs of buying from you. Our packaging experts can help you combat this problem and keep your packaging in line with current environmental legislation and packing logistic legislation.
Your packaging should also appeal to the customer aesthetically, which will differ depending on the industry and price point of your product. For example, people will have very different expectations from their high-end jewelle packaging and discount clothing packaging.