When you run an eCommerce business, getting your products to your customers quickly is essential, as is making sure those customers get what they ordered, and that their goods aren’t damaged in transit.
Which is why you might be tempted to use as much packaging as you can to make orders remain safe and secure until they reach their final destination.
Unfortunately, this can result in excess packaging which, rather than enhancing your customers’ experience, can actually ruin it.
How Does Excess Packaging Ruin the Customer Experience?
Alongside the growth in online sales, there’s been an increase in customer expectations.
Consumers are no longer happy to have a package arrive in a brown box full of bubble wrap or Styrofoam peanuts.
Instead, they want an experience from the moment their package arrives. And, ideally, they want that experience to be environmentally friendly, which is where excess packaging can have a negative impact.
While customers want their products to be packaged well, so their goods aren’t damaged, they don’t want that packaging to be wasteful. If the box is too large for the products your shipping, for example, you’ll need to use additional packaging materials to keep that product secure within the box.
No matter the type of packaging and even if it’s recyclable, the impression excess packaging leaves your customer with is that your company is wasteful and doesn’t care about the environment. Plus, having excess packaging can leave them frustrated because they then have to get rid of it, be that in a bin or by making a trip to the local recycling centre.
Make sure, therefore, that you source packaging that comes in a range of sizes that fit the products your selling. Even better, look at options such as box on demand that allow you to customise the size of your packaging, reducing waste and – ultimately – helping improve your customer’s experience.
Ease of Opening
Excess packaging isn’t just about what you use to wrap the products in to keep them safe. It’s about the products themselves and how they’re packaged. Not only does your packaging need to be the right size for the products inside, but it also needs to be easy to open. Anything too complicated, and your customers won’t be happy.
Children’s toys are a perfect example of this; parents regularly complain about how long it takes to unwrap them. Known as ‘wrap rage’, it’s something major retailers such as Hasbro are addressing with simpler packaging and is something you can do too to improve your customers experience by using only what is needed.
Don’t use extra plastic wrapping, for example, and stay away from things like blister packs and anything else that adds to the time it takes to unpack a product. Remember, though, this doesn’t mean that you should not use any packaging – you still want your goods to arrive undamaged after all – it just means only using as much as you need to make sure this happens.
Ways Packaging Can Improve the Customer Experience
Beyond reducing the amount of packaging, other ways you can improve a customer’s experience, include:
- Outer packaging: When customers receive their order in packaging that looks good, it makes them feel special and excited about what’s inside. Use colour if you can to help build this excite and make sure your brand name is prominently displayed.
- Quality: Goods are more likely to get damaged if your packaging isn’t up to scratch. And, even if the goods are fine, receiving a box that is ripped or torn doesn’t make a good impression. Make sure, therefore, you use good quality packaging, even if it costs a bit more. If you aren’t sure what type of packaging you need, companies such as Ribble can help you find what works for you.
- Unboxing: There’s something special about ordering goods online and having the box arrive. It builds a sense of anticipation. However, once the box is opened, customers want to see what they’ve ordered. This is why unboxing is so important. In fact, unboxing has been a bit of an internet craze for the past few years. Get your packaging right, and you could end up as an online sensation, reaching more customers and making focusing on the unboxing experience well worth it!