Custom Retail Boxes vs. eCommerce Packaging

learn about the value of custom retail boxesPackaging is what your consumers see first, whether it be in stores or delivered at front doors. In a world that is increasingly visual, and increasingly more competitive, first impressions matter — and there are numerous ways to maximize the impact of your customer’s retail and eCommerce experience. Innovative eCommerce packaging and custom retail boxes might be the best next step to driving success. Investing in the right type of packaging can make a real difference, not just in the customer experience, but also in your bottom line.

With the major eCommerce boom throughout the pandemic, you may be expanding to reach more of your customers online with eCommerce packaging. For busy holiday seasons or everyday essentials, on the other hand, you may be more focused on presenting eye-catching custom retail boxes for in-store promotions. Whether you are reaching customers online or kickstarting your in-store offerings, there are a few key differences between both types of packaging you need to know to stay competitive.

The Ultimate Purpose: Protection vs. Promotion

When selling products in a retail environment, custom retail boxes are primarily designed to grab customer attention from the store shelf. Retailers take into consideration details that involve the physicality of the store — like how and where the item sits on a shelf, along with complimentary products it can be paired with. Ecommerce packaging, on the other hand, undergoes a number of trials reaching the end consumer. While branding and visual appeal remains important here, eCommerce packaging prioritizes safeguarding products on the journey they take. Fortunately, there are a number of common shipping boxes used in eCommerce that can be further customized to fit your product and line of business.

At Axis Corrugated Container, we have an enormous inventory of corrugated boards and materials and can customize your solution for protection and promotion. Optimize the packaging specifically for your product, no matter the channel — with custom box types and solutions. You might be surprised to find the next step to driving real retail and eCommerce success could be as simple as streamlining your process with professional printing and effective boxing solutions.

Optimizing DIM Weight vs. Palletization

In most cases eCommerce products ship individually while retail products are shipped with other units. In either case, it is essential for eCommerce retailers to be aware of DIM weight and for retailers to consider crush testing and palletization.

Dimension weight depends on the space a package takes up compared to its weight. The more efficiently you package your products, in most cases the less it will cost to ship them. It is important, however, to strike the right balance between cutting down on packaging and maximizing product protection. The ideal middle will make the package as small as possible — without compromising the end delivery.

In retail packaging, products are often shipped to a single retail location in a columnar or interlocking palletization pattern. Optimizing the box shape and size to fit more products on a pallet and in a trailer or shipping container can save shipping costs. Changing how the parts fit in the box, and how many are in each, may reduce the number of boxes you need, fitting more on a pallet and in a truckload. Custom retail boxes can help ensure your product can support additional layers of weight, ultimately helping you improve palletization and save on material and shipping costs.

Additional Key Considerations for Custom Retail Boxes and eCommerce Packaging

Beyond optimizing shipping and presentation, customers now have more needs and expectations for their custom retail boxes and eCommerce packaging. New smart packaging can help brands deliver positive customer experiences, no matter whether the item is purchased in-store or online. For some brands this might mean implementing QR codes; for others, implementing anti-counterfeiting measures. Not only must eCommerce packaging withstand any bumps along the road, it must also be delivered on time, have simple, easy-to-open packaging, and be made of environmentally-friendly materials.

Even in a new age with different customer demands, consistent branding will remain critical for primary and secondary packaging alike. While consumers enjoy their elevated packaging experience, you want them to remember the brand that brought this experience to life.

Curious about the difference between other types of packaging? Uncover the distinction between industrial and consumer packaging in another recent blog.

Maximizing the Customer Experience Online and In-Stores

While both eCommerce and retail packaging should focus on an exceptional unboxing experience, maximizing it can vary between the two channels. For retail packaging, you will still want to present custom retail boxes with strong imagery, high-quality print, and essential product information. While functionality remains important, the priority remains to engage customers and gain recognition with graphics and text that resonates.

Although brand recognition remains important in eCommerce, particularly in competitive spaces, the main job of eCommerce packaging remains to protect the product as it moves through the supply chain to the consumer. This means minimizing frustrations with easy-to-open packaging, protective packaging, and environmentally friendly packaging supplies. Consider whether this package will be left in the mailbox, or directly at the front door.

With Axis Corrugated Container, custom packaging is smarter packaging — plain and simple. Learn more about customizing your next eCommerce or retail packaging with our free eBook — and take the question out of protecting and promoting your investment. Discover smarter ways to reduce damaged goods, without increasing your spend.

Reinforce Your Brand Online, or In-Stores, with Axis

Have you thought about expanding into the world of eCommerce, but are unsure if your packaging is up to speed? Maybe it’s time to re-engage customers in-stores, or reach new locations with a fresh look? Whether you are reaching customer in-stores or online, custom retail boxes and eCommerce packaging will give you an edge. Leave the technical packaging considerations to Axis Corrugated Container — so you can focus on securing customer and growth success. Reach out to our packaging team at Axis today to improve your packaging performance.