Preparing for the New Year with a Packaging Audit
We’re officially coming into 2024! For many businesses, the New Year represents a time for reflection, goal-setting, and strategic planning. And while not normally at the top of the priority list, a packaging audit can be an invaluable tool for helping you identify areas of improvement that can have a major impact down the line. Whether or not most people realize it, the right packaging solution can optimize nearly every area of your business, from your supply chain and logistics to your product presentation and your customers’ experiences. A packaging audit will help ensure that your packaging solution and your business is set up for success in the coming year.
What is a Packaging Audit?
First, what exactly is involved in a packaging audit? In general, a packaging audit is a systematic assessment of your company’s packaging materials, processes, and practices in order to identify areas for improvement and cost savings.
The specifics of a packaging audit may vary depending on your industry and the needs of your business. It typically includes a closer inspection of things like packaging material type and usage, packaging design and performance, cost analysis, supply chain integration and logistics, customization and printing, and waste management and recycling opportunities.
Exploring the ways in which your packaging solution fits into these aspects, and vice versa, can help you identify problems and opportunities for your business.
What Problems Can an Audit Identify?
So, what kinds of problems can come up in a packaging audit? Again, the specifics will depend on your industry and the needs of your business, but common problems may include things like:
- Excessive packaging—Oversized boxes, unnecessary layers or protection, and too much filler can lead to increased costs and waste generation.
- Inefficient design—Poorly designed packaging can result in wasted space inside the boxes, as well as increased shipping costs.
- Ineffective protection—Packaging that fails to adequately protect your products results in increased product damage and may lead to a higher number of returns and poor customer loyalty.
- Poor supplier relationships—If you’re experiencing unreliable deliveries, inconsistent quality, or unfavorable pricing terms from your current supplier, it might be time to consider a new partnership.
- Customer dissatisfaction—Packaging that does not meet customer expectations can lead to dissatisfaction and negative feedback, both of which can affect your brand’s reputation.
This is far from a comprehensive list. Depending on your business, you may also want to look into issues surrounding compliance or personalized branding. Whatever your audit involves, it should give you a thorough understanding of how well your current solution is performing.
How Does a Packaging Audit Help Your Business Thrive?
Once you’ve identified issues with your current packaging solution, the next part of a packaging audit is figuring out where and how you can make changes to optimize your packaging and, by extension, your business.
For instance, if you find that you’re ordering too much inventory or your packaging is poorly designed for your products, you can explore alternative solutions that provide optimal protection for your products and streamline your shipping and delivery processes. Not only can both of these have a major impact on the satisfaction and happiness of your customers, but it can also help you save money by cutting out unnecessary expenses.
Similarly, if you’re losing packaging due to poor storage conditions or other causes, it may be worth looking into a packaging supplier that can provide JIT shipping and VMI services.
And finally, a packaging audit can help you explore ways to connect better with your customers. If your audit reveals that you’re missing out on branding opportunities, for example, you can look into incorporating custom graphics and printing into your packaging.
What You Should Look for in a Packaging Audit?
Now that we’ve covered the value that a packaging audit can bring to your business, it’s important to note that not every packaging audit will bring the same value. When you choose to undergo a packaging audit, you’ll want to make sure that you’re trusting a supplier who has the expertise and experience to offer a comprehensive evaluation.
This should include things like identifying opportunities for greater customization, both in the design and functionality of your packaging and in the appearance of it via graphics and print. Beyond that, you’ll want to make sure that your packaging audit provides insights based on data and cost analyses. The supplier performing your audit should also compare your current packaging solution against industry benchmarks and best practices to identify areas for innovation. And, finally, be sure that the supplier performing your audit is aware of the latest trends in technology integration. Smart packaging and advanced tracking systems will continue to play a significant role in the effectiveness of packaging solutions moving forward.
Get a Free Packaging Audit from the Experts at Axis Corrugated Container
At Axis Corrugated Container, we’ve supplied custom and standard corrugated packaging solutions for businesses since the 1980s. Our team of expert packaging engineers work directly with you to find the packaging solution that is right for your business. Whether you need standard packaging in bulk or customized packaging delivered on demand, we have the capabilities to make it happen. On top of that, our fleet of delivery trucks allow us to provide JIT shipping and VMI programs so you can be sure that you’ll always have the packaging you need when you need it.
Are you ready to optimize your packaging solution for the New Year? Get in touch with us today and we’ll get you started with a free packaging audit.