Are you having trouble keeping up with your online orders? Do you need a better packaging and fulfillment process? Are you looking for tips on saving money and getting products out to ship faster? Read on to find out our expert online retail packaging solutions.
It’s no secret that online shopping is on the rise — with 2020’s global online retail revenue skyrocketing to over two times the amount of money made just four years earlier in 2016. And it’s not stopping anytime soon, as continued growth is projected all the way through 2024 at the time of writing.
So online sales are clearly essential in today’s retail industry, but e-commerce poses new challenges that don’t apply to in-store environments. From complicating the packaging and fulfillment process to facing many different types of shipping environments as products travel to different locations, you’ll need to optimize packaging and processes specific to e-commerce in order to ensure your success.
With more than 65 years of experience in the packaging industry, Jamestown Container has continued to evolve and adapt to retail trends as they arise and stay ahead of the curve on best practices. Today, we’re sharing the expertise we’ve built on e-commerce packaging solutions over the years.
Here are the common issues faced by e-commerce brands and how to solve them.
Packaging Doesn’t Withstand Shipping
E-commerce packaging needs to be durable enough to withstand shipping to multiple possible locations across the country (or world, depending on your business’s reach!). Your packages will likely change hands several times and need to endure much more handling than they do in a retail store.
Creating long-lasting, strong packaging starts with using the right material. Corrugated is one of the most durable materials on the market, which is why it’s such a popular choice for e-commerce businesses. It’s also well-known as an incredibly sustainable material, making your processes more eco-friendly (more on that later).
You’ll want to work with a team that can ensure structural integrity. For instance, Jamestown’s team of qualified engineers and certified ISTA testing lab follow a proven process for creating and testing custom packaging that holds up even amidst challenging shipping environments.
Using right-sized boxes and avoiding void space are other important considerations when designing packaging that lessens damage. Custom foam inserts have cutouts that fit your product exactly and fill the rest of the box, keeping your products secure during shipment.
Packaging and Fulfillment Process Isn’t Efficient Enough
With online orders rushing in at a faster pace, you’ll need to have efficient systems in place in order to keep your e-commerce customers happy. Enlisting the help of a third party is a perfect way to speed up your packaging and fulfillment processes. A variety of retail packaging solutions rely on third-party logistics (3PL), like vendor managed inventory and contract packaging (co-packaging).
Vendor managed inventory services from your packaging supplier make acquiring packaging pieces much more efficient. Electronic vendor managed inventory (eVMI) systems involve you scanning packaging as you use it so you can automatically be sent new packaging to replenish your stock. With these processes in place, you’ll save warehouse space by storing less packaging, steer clear of aging, unusable packaging, and avoid emergency orders from your packaging vendor.
If you want to take it one step further, consider outsourcing your entire packaging and fulfillment process. Co-packing services can help support you with order fulfillment. All you have to do is send your product to your packaging vendor, and they’ll handle the packaging creation, building, and shipping process for you. This leaves fewer steps and stops in your supply chain, helping get customers their orders faster.
Packaging is Too Expensive
Custom packaging costs can add up as your business grows. If your packaging is too expensive, there are a number of ways to reduce costs without reducing packaging quality.
By making your packaging structurally sound, you’ll automatically lower your risk of sunk costs by avoiding product damage. With right-size packaging, you get the benefit of lower shipping costs. Most shipping companies today use DIM (dimensional) weight rather than pure weight to decide shipping costs, making unnecessarily large, but light, boxes more expensive to ship. While strong, corrugated is also a fairly light packaging material, helping to lower your shipping costs even further.
At Jamestown, we’re very cognizant of our customers’ pricing needs. Check out our blog about packaging cost reduction for more tips.
Customers Aren’t Satisfied With Packaging Design
When selling online, you have less of a chance to interact with customers physically, so your packaging is essential in demonstrating product value. Connect with your customers and achieve deeper brand loyalty through your packaging by making it innovative, easy-to-open, and strong enough to avoid product damage.
Custom e-commerce packaging can show off your brand and delight your customers upon arrival. Creating a positive and memorable unboxing experience is also the perfect way to encourage social sharing and word-of-mouth testimonies that increase your sales.
Since packaging is already a necessary cost in e-commerce, you should use it to its full potential by making your custom packaging a marketing piece. Leverage your packaging to share the brand values and value proposition that in-store customers would usually get through interaction with a salesperson or seeing a retail display.
Jamestown’s Expert Online Retail Packaging Solutions
Facing one or more of these e-commerce packaging and order fulfillment problems? Our extensive industry experience and wide variety of online retail packaging solutions can cover any issue you encounter.
From packaging protection through our corrugated production and Viva Foam divisions to third-party services like vendor managed inventory and co-packing, our range of packaging solutions will support your e-commerce efforts. But don’t just take our word for it, check out our customer testimonials to see how we’ve turned challenges into success stories.