A person designing product packaging

5 Rules for Product Packaging

About John Ducard
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With most products, to create, design and produce the item takes a range of resources. Packaging can often be overlooked, rushed or have little money spent on it, but, it is the product packaging that can differentiate your item from competitors, so it is vital for businesses to carefully consider the following tips, to ensure the packaging solution selected is the right one for the product and sets it apart from the rest!

A person designing product packaging

Function

While it is easy to get caught up in the importance of the appearance of your product packaging, it is vital not to overlook the functionality and form. The form is firstly, that the packaging is required to keep the product safe and in the best possible condition when the consumer receives it. Shrink wrapping machinery can be beneficial to many businesses and can protect a range of products as it provides both durability and preservation of the product and convenience to the consumers. The function is how the packaging can provide an ease of use, amongst other practical benefits to the consumer. A great example of packaging that has considered the functionality in the design is Heinz and the tomato ketchup bottle. Sales increased greatly when Heinz turned the bottle upside down, making the entrance to the container at the bottom of the bottle. This change in design made it much easier for the consumer to access the last of tomato ketchup in the bottle. The plastic used is also slightly water resistant, which enables the liquid to slide down the plastic. Efficiency and ease of use are paramount to consumers and functionality can help to secure repeated sales.

 

Be Clear

Often, product packaging can become overdesigned, which can lead to consumers avoiding the product as it can seem too hectic or confusing. Clarity should be maintained to ensure that the consumer can clearly identify what the product is and what it does. If it takes more than a glance for the consumer to understand or gain this information, it is likely they will seek an alternative that communicates the message to them instantly. On the other hand, packaging that is too simple can also deter potential customers. If the brand and benefits of the product are difficult to find on the packaging and the consumer is forced to search for the information, it can cause frustration.

 

Simplicity vs Creativity

Packaging is often an afterthought, after spending months designing and producing your product, the time spent on packaging can be as little as two weeks. Packaging contributes to the perceived quality of your product, so if you have a high-quality product, you will want your packaging to reflect this. Quality not only comes in the materials used, but also in the creativity and form of the design. If your packaging is innovative and sets your product apart from the rest, it is likely your product will be chosen by the consumer, rather than your competitors.

 

Know Your Target Audience

Knowing your target audience will hugely influence your product packaging design. The demographics to consider when evaluating your target audience include the age, gender, income, family life cycle, marital status, amongst other factors. These factors will provide an inclination of what packaging the target audience will appreciate and be drawn to.

 

Originality

There are many businesses that still have a bricks and mortar shop, but is it highly likely that they will also have a shop online. During the product design stages, it is important to not only consider how an item will appear on a shelf in a store but also how it will photograph and be presented online. It can be expensive to have two packaging designs, one suitable for stores and the other suitable for online, so it is important to ensure the one design, works for both selling platforms.


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