BEFORE YOU DESIGN YOUR PACKAGING, ASSESS YOUR NEEDS
Packaging serves six primary functions and all of these are accomplished through design - market and sell, preserve and protect, contain and transport.
MARKET & SELL
Does your package inspire an Instagram post? Does it reflect your brand? Will it fit on the shelf?
PRESERVE & PROTECT
Beautiful design simply isn't enough. Food safety, adequate shelf life and security are must-haves.
CONTAIN & TRANSPORT
How will your product be handled, distributed and stored? Is e-commerce part of the plan?
The importance of each of these will depend on where and how you sell your product and to whom you will sell it. You may only need a shipping package or a container that will protect the product during transportation and/or you may need to rely on the package to do the selling for you.
Assess your Needs
Begin at the end and work your way back. Assessing the life cycle of your product from after end use to manufacture will ensure you have considered all the important criteria to creating the perfect package.
It is natural to want to start with a graphic design and move through the steps to the final product but, this can result in some nasty surprises down the line. Before you choose a material, type of container or design you should consider:
point of sale location
size and price point
handling, distribution and storage
safety and security
Test your Product in the Market
Prior to investing heavily in packaging, conduct a market trial. You can select a stock container, slap on a label or two, and get the product out to your test market (friends, family and local farmers markets are great to get feedback on the concept). This will help control costs, solicit ideas and avoid potential issues you may not have considered. A word of caution - not all packaging materials are suitable for food. It is best to seek out a reputable distributor of packaging products.
Starting with in-stock, generic packaging is an affordable way to launch your product but it is important to be thinking a little longer term because product recognition may be the key to developing brand loyalty.
Custom packaging can be an expensive investment. To bring a custom printed product to market, we generally use the rule of thumb that you should budget a minimum of $15,000 to cover graphic design and tooling for the various components ( eg, primary container, seals, wraps, containment and shipping box, shipping supplies, etc.).
Packaging is an integral part of any retail product, particularly if its job is to sell for you. The package has to attract the consumer and stand up to all the handling required to bring the product to market. Taking the time to fully understand these needs before you invest will ensure you design a cost effective package that will assist in the success of your product.
10 EASY STEPS TO PACKAGING YOUR PRODUCT
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