There’s a popular saying that goes like this: “You never get a second chance to make a first impression.”
In e-commerce, first impressions mean everything. In fact, they’re powerful enough to make or break your business. Your customers expect a great first impression when they visit your website – a modern and user-friendly website is a must-have – and when they receive their order from you in the mail.
You want to deliver a pleasant unboxing experience to anyone who orders from you. When a customer gets a good first impression of their first physical interaction with your online shop – which is receiving their order – they’ll become more likely to become a repeat customer.
Here are four ways to improve your packaging:
1. Go Green
If you think your customers won’t notice any eco-friendly efforts your company makes, think again. They see and appreciate it. In fact, a 2015 study revealed that going green can do wonders for your business. For starters:
- 93% of consumers would gain a positive image of your company
- 90% would be more likely to trust your company
- 88% would become loyal, repeat customers
If you decide to adopt more eco-friendly practices, go ahead and shout it from the rooftops! Post about it on your website and all over social media.
Your efforts can include instigating a “zero waste” shipping program where you use space-efficient packaging that’s sized properly for the contents inside. You can also pack your boxes with biodegradable and/or recycled packing materials. Another idea: stamp each box with a message that reads something like, “Be kind to Mother Nature. Please recycle this box and all the packaging materials when you’re finished using them.”
There are so many different creative ways to go green with your packaging, but what really counts is making sure your customers know what role your company is playing in preserving the environment.
2. Include a Gift in the Package
A small gift can go a long way in creating a loyal customer base. Did you know that it’s six times more expensive to acquire new customers than it is to keep loyal customers? Be good to those who are keeping your business going.
If you want to surprise your customers with a small gift, here are some ideas:
- An exclusive coupon for a future purchase
- A personalized ‘thank you’ note
- Candy (GameKlip got a lot of publicity for doing this)
- A small item with your company’s logo on it (e.g. a keychain, sticker, or magnet)
3. Design Your Shipping Boxes
Everyone and their mother has seen a plain brown box before. Be the purple cow and offer a distinct and exciting package that screams “you”. Amazon does this, as does Bed Bath and Beyond with their gift packages. Some e-commerce businesses take it one step farther and send out awesome packaging that provides a magical unboxing experience. Graze is a good example.
Graze is an e-commerce subscription service that sends you a variety of snacks on a regular basis. Their packaging is fun, colorful, and compact. They made their packaging design an extension of their brand, and it’s been a wild marketing success.
The more attractive and creative your packaging, the more likely your customers will promote your business through word-of-mouth. Unboxing videos are popular on YouTube. In fact, 4 in 10 e-commerce consumers would take a picture of interesting packaging and share it with their friends on social media.
Offering premium packaging may even net you repeat customers. 52% of the consumers surveyed in a 2013 e-commerce packaging survey said that they’d be more likely to become repeat customers of an online shop that delivered unique packaging.
It’s also a good idea to put your company’s logo on the outside of the package. Doing so will expose your brand not only to your customer but also to anyone handling the box.
TIP: If custom packaging isn’t within your budget, you can order colorful tape with your company’s logo on it and use it on plain brown boxes. This is an affordable, eye-catching solution.
Keep in mind that the attention and care you put into the design of your boxes should correlate with the price of the item you’re selling. Customers ordering $10 parts don’t expect anything fancy. Customers ordering $300 parts expect a higher level of attention and care in the packaging. If you’re looking to save money, you can only focus on packaging only for the more expensive parts you sell.
What do you do to make your packaging stand out? Let us know on Facebook!