Your customers’ experience with your brand isn’t limited to your online presence; it extends to the in-person experience with your product. And before they even see your product, they see the box it comes in.
Maybe it’s a plain brown box, maybe it has another company’s logo on it. Regardless, e-commerce merchants that want to differentiate themselves must integrate their brand identity into every shipment.
Many merchants use packaging to help get lifelong customers. According to Dotcom Distribution, 52% of consumers are likely to make repeat purchases from an online merchant that delivers premium packaging, and 40% of consumers would share an image of a delivery via social media if it came in a unique package.
While custom branded boxes are more expensive than plain generic boxes, they certainly leave a more memorable impression of your brand.
How to create the ultimate unboxing experience
Here are three top considerations for choosing custom branded boxes for your online orders.
1. Choose the right box size
Using too large of a box leads to potentially being over-charged by shipping carriers for the space it takes up, while choosing too small of a box can cause the product to arrive damaged. The size of your box should neatly match the item you’re shipping, with a little buffer room to add protective fillers.
Think through what will happen in different order scenarios. For example:
- When someone orders several items, will they each need their own box or will they be able to fit in one together?
- If you sell different sized items, will the same box work for all of them?
E-commerce merchants must find the right sized box(es) for their products and use packing materials to supplement.
[Related article: 3 Common Packing Mistakes Every Business Makes]
2. Make it memorable
By including your branded colors, logo, imagery, and/or positioning in all elements of your business, you can create a consistent, cohesive brand experience. Custom-printed boxes that appeal to your customer base can enhance brand awareness and leave a lasting impression on your customers.
In fact, some customers may like the box so much that they hold on to and repurpose it for some other use.
Of course, there are more ways to add a personal touch, such as including a handwritten letter or note. Just keep in mind that you have greater flexibility over this when you are small and handling ecommerce fulfillment yourself. As you scale and grow, adding a personal touch can become unsustainable.
In addition, if you are working with a fulfillment company, you may be limited in what you can put in a box (and for some providers, you may not be able to use a custom box at all).
[Related article: The Brand Experience: Why Online Merchants Should Use Custom Boxes]
3. Stay mindful of your margins
No matter how aesthetically pleasing your branded box is, it won’t be worth the cost if it breaks your margins. Using custom services are certainly more expensive than your standard packing supplies, so consider which add-ons are worth it for your business. If your items are not expensive, a custom box may never be financially viable for your business.
Another option is to factor the cost of custom box(es) into the price of the product. Brand loyalists are typically willing to pay more for your product over a competitor’s, especially if it reinforces an identity that they want to see in themselves.
If nothing about your brand is generic, then maybe your boxes shouldn’t be either. By following the tips above, you can create a unique, branded experience.
With the rise of digital and social media, comes an increase in happy consumers sharing their unboxing experience. This form of social proof shows the world how much your customers love your brand.
Your box may even become the deciding factor in your customers’ minds when they think about purchasing from you again in the future. By the way, ShipBob is a 3PL that can fulfill orders for ecommerce businesses using the company’s custom branded boxes.
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