Cut Packaging Costs
Packaging can be beautiful, eye catching and attractive. As such it can change our perceptions about a product and its value, as well as influencing our buying decisions. Innovative packaging design can make a product immediately stand out from the competition. Equally, the same product, packaged in a variety of different ways, can significantly expand the potential market.
Packaging also helps to protect goods in storage and transit. It allows them to reach the customer in the same condition as they rolled off the production line and it extends the lifespan of consumable products. It allows goods to be easily stacked in warehouses, in lorries and on supermarket shelves.
Optimising Packaging Design
Whilst packaging brings many benefits, it also has cost implications; both financial and environmental. Back in 2008, WRAP investigated the impact of reducing packaging on the product and the perception. The aim was to explore ways of optimising carton board and corrugated packaging without compromising on commercial gains.
Although a decade has passed since the report, the findings are still relevant. As 42 British companies sign up to the latest WRAP initiative – the UK Plastic Pact –to reduce packaging waste, it is worth considering whether small changes could optimise your product packaging.
The 2008 WRAP investigation included work on two popular products; Duchy Biscuits and Tomato Puree. The process began with consideration of the functions of the primary, secondary and tertiary packaging for these products.
In the case of Duchy Biscuits, the packaging played an important role in keeping the delicate consumables fresh. The brand is associated with quality, so customers would be unhappy if they opened the packet to find broken biscuits. It was important that protective properties of the packaging were maintained and that any revisions didn’t look cheap.
The study investigated how to reduce the weight of the carton board, without compromising on the protective capacity. The size of the overlapping flaps that were glued together to form the box were also minimised. These small changes didn’t impact on the perception of the brand; in fact shoppers couldn’t recognise the difference. It did reduce the volume of packaging by 11% and that helped to lower both packaging and transportation costs.
Products including tomato puree, creams and toothpaste used to come in a tube, with a secondary packaging box. The study considered the role of that secondary layer. They decided to see if there would be any commercial impact if it was removed altogether. The fact that many ‘tube’ products are now sold without the outer box, is testament to the findings.
By packing the tubes in shelf ready packaging, they are transported and stored without being squeezed and are convenient to display on the shelf. Removing an entire layer of packaging offers sizable cost savings. These play out in the packing process and transportation of goods, as well as packaging materials. The change also significantly reduces waste and environmental impact.
Optimised Packaging Design
If your packaging design reliably delivers your goods in line with customer expectations, you may see little reason for change, but the WRAP investigation may give you food for thought. It certainly shows that small changes can make a big difference.
If you are looking at ways to reduce your packaging budget or enhance your environmental credentials, Aylesbury Box Company can assist. With an in-house packaging design and box manufacturing service, we have the expertise and resources to optimise your packaging.