Avoid Inflating Expenses with Unnecessary Packaging Costs
There are numerous aspects of your packaging processes that can lead to higher costs. From having inefficient manufacturing and storing processes to using too much unnecessary packaging material and suffering from high amounts of transit damage, true and lasting packaging cost reduction comes from considering your entire program and identifying multiple areas for sustainable improvement.
Here are three of our top tips for packaging cost reduction.
Optimize Your Packaging Processes
An easy to overlook but essential component of your packaging costs is that of receiving, storing, and maintaining the correct levels of packaging inventory over time. When you have excess packaging inventory sitting on warehouse shelves, it’s taking up space and time and tying up your money.
Plus, the more time packaging inventory stays in your warehouse, the longer it has to get damaged, become out of date as your branding, products, or packaging priorities change, or get lost amidst your other warehouse inventory. Add onto that the possibility of needing to pay for rush shipping for new packaging if demand suddenly picks up, and you’ll start to see the complete picture of why having an unoptimized packaging inventory system in place can drain company resources.
So how can your company avoid losing money on this aspect of the packaging process? You need to find ways to minimize the amount of warehouse space you use by keeping better track of demand as it shifts. One effective solution for this is to outsource your packaging inventory management to the company that creates your packaging, so they keep track of demand and ship you the packaging you need when you need it.
Jamestown Container’s eVMI (electronic vendor managed inventory) solution uses a combination of clear communication from the get-go to set up a system that addresses your priorities and data collected over time by your team scanning packaging inventory as it’s used. This allows us to more effectively track demand and manage your packaging inventory to allow for cost-savings and free up warehouse time and space.
Use Space-Efficient Packaging
It’s widely understood that shipping is cheaper for smaller and lighter boxes. Luckily, corrugated is easily customizable to provide the appropriate size for more space- and cost-efficient packaging and is well-established as one of the most lightweight packaging materials.
Since 2015, the transportation industry has incorporated dimensional weight into the determination of shipping costs. Dimensional weight (or DIM weight) helps find the billable weight of a package larger than one cubic foot. It’s calculated by dividing the package’s volume (L x W x H) by a mathematical constant determined by each specific carrier called the DIM factor. The final billable weight is the greater of the DIM weight or the actual weight.
This change significantly affected the price of large, light shipments since their billable weight would be determined by taking into account their oversized dimensions rather than their small actual weight. Most consumers report disliking overpackaging due to environmental concerns. Additionally, using less material in your packaging program is more cost-efficient. With these factors in mind, it’s clear that inefficient and unnecessary package space and packing materials don’t make sense for today’s companies.
Working with a proven packaging partner’s team of experts to create custom retail or e-commerce packaging is a great way to cut down on shipping costs while still protecting your product from damage, which we’ll discuss next.
If a customer returns a damaged product, this represents a loss for your business in all aspects of the supply chain, from manufacturing to packaging and initial to return shipping. It may also negatively affect the customer’s loyalty to your brand or product — and other potential customers’ opinions if they decide to share a bad review online. Properly protecting your products reduces damage and keeps customers happy, so your company faces less risk of sunk costs.
Having robust packaging paired with the right packing materials to reduce void is essential in keeping your products intact. Custom-shaped options for fragile or complex products with multiple parts may cost more upfront but can save you in the long-run when it comes to product damage reduction. By having strong packaging tailored to your products and needs, you’ll be more easily able to assign the cause of damage to transit-related reasons, allowing you to better assess and switch between carriers if necessary.
Jamestown Container has a dedicated package engineering team to consistently test and find innovative structural solutions that keep products safe. Our Viva Foam Products division provides various options for polyurethane and polyethylene packing materials to effectively cushion multiple types of products across industries. With these two together, we have capabilities to both develop and manufacture highly customized packaging solutions that ensure superior product protection throughout transit, in warehouse storage, and in retail locations.
Jamestown Can Help You with Packaging Cost Reduction
Throughout this blog, we’ve called out several different offerings that are a part of our wide range of full-service packaging solutions, like our eVMI outsourced packaging inventory services, environmentally friendly materials, custom packaging capabilities, and Viva Foam Products. Our 65 years of packaging industry experience have allowed us to expand our expertise into all areas of packaging products and processes. Now, we provide our customers with holistic solutions that improve all areas of their packaging to deliver cost-savings and help them win and keep more customers.
Contact Jamestown if you’re interested in working with a packaging partner that prioritizes creating high-quality and cost-efficient custom solutions that match the unique needs of every company we work with.