Ways To Develop An Ideal Packaging Strategy?

Packaging, though, seemingly a pretty straightforward and routine function, is definitely more significant than it appears. Even the best of products must be suitably packed for them to appeal to the consumer.  Right from the material used and the design of the pack to boosting sales and profits, Packaging Strategy must cover several critical aspects in order to fall in line with the larger business objectives of the company. The ideal Packaging Strategy of any company will be based on its product offerings and scale of operations. Organizational focus and targets and industry-specific practices and requirements too need to be factored in for the strategy to be effective.

The most effective approach to develop a packaging strategy is to:
  • Understand the key objectives, areas of focus, and specific targets of the company
  • Get familiar with the goals and objectives of related functions, typically Marketing and Sales as Packaging has a telling influence on both these functions
  • Analyze the impact of these goals on the main aspects of Packaging
  • Formulate strategies to address the impact successfully

Your strategy must address the fundamental purposes of packaging:

  • Safety:
Starting from the material used for packaging, the ink used in printing information on the pack or pamphlets inside the pack to the design and sealing techniques, your packed product must in no way compromise the health or safety of the end user.

  • Preservation:
The main purpose of a pack is to suitably store the product and preserve it from any damage or contamination until the pack is opened for use by the consumer.  Re-usable packs must be sturdy and safe enough to store the product throughout its shelf-life.

  • Uniqueness:
The design – shape, size and color of the packed product must visibly stand out from other similar competitor offerings, coercing the consumer to add it to their shopping carts.  While your product may be the best in the market, packaging it in an innovative manner is important to arouse the curiosity of consumers as most of the inexpensive products are purchased on impulse.  An attractive and innovative pack is often synonymous with quality.

  • Ease of Use
Ease of handling, portability and the effort spent to open the pack, use or remove its content and close the pack if it is re-usable is a key factor that needs to be addressed.

While ease of use from the end-user perspective is a prime concern, it is also important to make sure that the larger units bundled for shipment and distribution too are easier to transport, dismantle or unpack as it saves a lot of time otherwise spent on getting the products stacked on the shelves of the retailers. Discarded packs must be easy to dispose of as well.

  • Promotion
Packaging is also an important marketing tool or channel that directly reaches each and every end user who shops for the product. Very few companies have fully leveraged the potential of this channel to establish an emotional connect with the consumer.

The packed product must reflect the key values of the company, such as eco-friendliness, ethical /organic sourcing and other significant initiatives.  Prominent use of the brand’s logo and color schemes serve to reiterate what the company and brands stand for.

  • Communication
Featuring clear, concise and relevant information / message on the package, or label is a great way to gain the trust of your consumers.  It is quite common to also print the contact details of the customer care department to show that your company is open to feedback and willing to act on it if need arises.
While working on these basic purposes, it also important to consider a few other aspects that may prove game changers:

  • Sustainability:
Procuring packaging material from sustainable sources ensures that a steady supply of materials will be available to meet the company’s requirements, should you wish to stick on to a tried and tested material and design.

  • Eco-Friendliness
An eco-friendly approach to packaging is a social responsibility that your organization and consumers will willingly encourage and support.  Opting for reusable, recyclable, organic and/or easily degradable packing materials that best meets primary objectives of packaging is ideal. Similarly printing ink from natural dyes too could suit your purpose. Refining package design and packing process to make them eco-friendly is also appreciable.

  • Technology / Automation
An ideal packaging strategy must also consider the safe use of technology to automate packaging process in line with industry specific standards and practices.  This not only helps ensure the quality and quantity of the products and packs, but also minimizes loss possibilities of contamination of the product due to manual handling.

  • Cost-Effectiveness
Your packaging strategy must also strive to keep costs under control without compromising on the quality or safety of the pack and the marketed product. Investing in the right packing material and design, minimizing wastage and faulty packs can help avoid unwanted expenses.

If packaging is automated, teaming up with your company’s production and maintenance teams to ensure that finished products seamlessly flow though the packaging machinery to wind up as a fully sealed quality pack will help discharged shared responsibilities quite effectively.

Formulating an ideal packaging strategy is a challenging task as it needs to address the expectations of all the stakeholders – the company, collaborative departments, and the consumer.  Start by getting familiar with these expectations and work on how best your packaging department can exceed or at best meet these prospects to create a successful strategy. Make sure to factor in the risks and methods to mitigate them during the process.

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