Packaging still matters to online shoppers

By Michelle Yeomans

- Last updated on GMT

Related tags Marketing

In the online world, the role of packaging and how it links to conventional retail purchasing is constantly evolving. According to Shikatani Lacroix, packaging continues to play a very important role in the online experience.

Jean-Pierre Lacroix, president of Shikatani Lacroix, a branding and design firm which specializes in identifying how brands connect with consumers told, “The majority of respondents who took part in our study, believed the primary purpose of packaging is to protect the product during shipping​.”

The study recently conducted by the company to determine the impact that online sales has on the role of conventional packaging revealed that, “Companies selling online need to ensure their product is not damaged during shipping, needs to be made of recyclable material and easy to open​.”

The real opportunity for marketers is to brand the experience when the package arrives in the online shopper's home​”, Lacroix points out.

This area, he believes is an opportunity for organizations to convert its functional need to one that provides a unique and ownable experience that builds affinity for the online service provider or branded product.

With packaging graphics currently being the link of familiarity between the offline and online world, the role of packaging remains important as this channel of distribution continues to gain a larger percentage of customers’ total purchases.

Shoppers continue to rely on packaging to make the right selection, 60 percent of respondents use packaging to help them identify what they are buying during their online selection process”, ​he points out.

The study also revealed that shoppers are looking for the quickest and most expedient way to grasp the information they require with more than 50 percent selecting the simpler approaches to see the packaging.

In 2010, sales of consumer package goods online grew to $12 billion and are anticipated to reach $16 billion by 2012.

With this, marketers have had to face challenges selling their products online, such as warehouse clubs demanding oversized multipacks to the convenience retail sector looking for fuss free products, with unique packaging.

Room for improvement

While the majority of those who took part in the survey cited that packaging is important in their online purchasing experience, 33 percent felt that the viewing and selecting of products, accessing pricing, features, shipping and payment options were issues that needed to be resolved.

On the back of its findings, the Shikatani Lacroix report suggests that marketers may want to consider developing unique packaging for categories where the product has a higher propensity of being sold as a gift. While exploring packaging approaches where there are strong linkages to the brand in ways that are more meaningful and distinctive too.

Related topics Packaging & Design Packaging

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