111The Importance of Product Packaging in Business
Come to think of it. There is never an item you purchase that comes by itself, bare, unwrapped, or unboxed. Most of the time, each and every item we buy is either wrapped or put in a box. At times, merchandise items are packed using plastic or paper bags, sack and can or even in whatever package the item can be put in. In short, all sorts of purchasable items are in dire need to be packed properly.
In the past, packaging could take just about any form or any material. This includes paper, newspaper, plastic box or sack. However, today, packaging is into every product design. It is now not at the tail end where it used to in the past. Indeed, product packaging has taken a totally new personality in marketing. As people’s needs change and as things change, so do products evolve to meet these changes.
Importance of Product Packaging
Traditional marketers did not see packaging as substantially important in marketing their products. Similarly, it probably explains the primacy of the four elements or the four P’s of marketing. To some traditional marketers as well as businessmen, having a good product is enough and success would come knocking on the door. Of course, with a little help from the price, a sprinkling of promotion here and there and a good location for the business where the product may be obtained.
In the modern globalized market, that’s not possible anymore. Product packaging is now given great consideration and studied closely. Creativity and ingenuity is seeded to generate the best package suitable for the product. As soon as a product prototype is approved, production of product packaging is made. Most manufacturers now employ a full force to do nothing but improve product and packaging design.
Benefits of Product Packaging
Just think about it this way. Which would you opt to buy: a food that is scooped and put in a plastic wrap at purchase or a food that is pre-sealed in a clear clean plastic container? A cell phone that is stacked inside a small plastic bag or a cell phone carefully housed in its own packaged box? If you’re an Apple product user, you would know the feeling of proudly unwrapping or unboxing your new iPhone from its elegant packaging and keeping both the unit and its fit-in box!
Current trends in product packaging pursue the theme emanating from this exciting unpacking experience. In response to demands for packages to be responsive to the environment, other element aimed in the design is the transformative capacity of the packaging material. This means packaging is still going to be functional and utilitarian outside of its original purpose. This also serves an extended role for promotion of the product. For instance, transparent plastic wrap being used as utility bag while still bearing the name of the original product.
That’s one valuable point of having a good product packaging. It does not only enable positive product experiences but also going beyond the product’s utility. At the other extreme, poor packaging can be an invitation to or an indication of a potential product failure. Ever heard of the effects of the Plain Packaging Law of Australia for cigarettes? The prohibition for Marlboro to use its logo and its typefaces in its packages resulted in the biggest decline in cigarette sales in twenty years!
Today, in order for businesses to stay competitively on the line, having just a good product by itself is completely not enough. The dictum states that a good product comes in a good package. And this is definitely true irrespective of the value or production cost of the product in question. Whether it’s as small an item as a paper pin or as expensive as a smartphone, these items need suitable packaging. One cannot imagine a good product moving successfully without a suitable packaging.
Packaging thus matters a lot. It can actually work wonders in a number of ways. One, it can be the short route to a purchase decision, where so many competing products vie for customer consideration. Customers usually do the easiest thing at point of purchase. In the absence of sufficient time to compare and evaluate each product’s merits, they resort to their visual facility. Imagine what happens to a product that is poorly packaged versus the rest of its competitors who are utilising captivating product packaging. Certainly, a product that suffers from a packaging deficiency becomes an easy candidate for shelf pull-out.
Packaging becomes more important because of the changes in consumer habits and lifestyles. Most consumers nowadays consider several factors in purchasing products. These include:
If packaging is inappropriate for the product it shields, the outcome may soon be obvious.
Packaging also speaks for the product inside it. If the product is high quality, it is expected that the package must exhibit the quality that it seeks to protect. There must be consistency of message inside and out.
It is very interesting to note that as packaging evolved into its current vital role, the materials being used to complete the packaging procedure have equally upgraded in quality. Packaging and supply chain companies have improved as well from the traditional procedure of using old newspapers, wood planks and shredded paper as fillers for big item packaging. They now have come up with innovative materials and packaging designs that are made of modern materials. These include:
- Corrugated cardboard
- Tissue wraps
- Padded bags
Packaging has indeed gone a long way from its early roles. Today, it has more visible function of protecting the product inside and keeping its freshness. It also helps keep functionality, operability and excellent condition intact. Product packaging serves as a powerful stimulus for positive consumer response. In fact, among the roles that packaging has assumed in modern living, the one with the farthest implication is its role in stimulating and creating positive experiences. It also implies meanings that go beyond the functionality and utility of the product itself. Hence, these roles spell unparalleled benefits for many business owners and consumers alike.