What is Industrial Packaging and Consumer Packaging: Differences + Similarities

what is industrial packaging and consumer packaging


One of the greatest advantages of corrugated packaging is its versatility. No matter what market your business is in (agricultural, medical, pharmaceutical, retail, e-Commerce, etc.), chances are you rely on a corrugated packaging solution somewhere in your supply chain. The uses of corrugated even span across both the industrial and consumer sectors. However, this prompts a few questions: one of the most commonly asked is, “What is industrial packaging and consumer packaging, and how does corrugated successfully meet the needs of both?” Let’s find out!

What is Industrial Packaging and Consumer Packaging?

Consumer corrugated packaging is intended for retail products and is usually designed with the end consumer in mind. Key characteristics of consumer packaging include high-quality printing and graphics to enhance visual appeal, adequate protection for consumer-grade products, ease of use for the consumer, and marketing elements to spread brand awareness and influence purchase decisions.

In contrast, industrial corrugated packaging is meant for shipping, handling, and storing goods, and is mostly used in supply chains and exchanges between businesses. Industrial packaging prioritizes durability, functionality, and strength over aesthetics. A few core characteristics include heavy-duty protection to handle heavier loads, customized dimensions to fit the requirements of industrial products, and stackability in warehouses.

Let’s take a closer look at how these types of packaging differ and how they are similar.

Industrial vs Consumer Packaging: How Do They Differ?

To answer the question, “What is industrial packaging and consumer packaging,” let’s dive deeper into some of the ways in which these two solutions differ from one another. There are three main areas to take note of: purpose, design, and volume and size.


When it comes to the purpose of industrial vs consumer-grade packaging, each solution is designed with distinct goals and objectives.

Consumer corrugated packaging is primarily focused on attracting consumers, protecting the products, and enhancing the unboxing experience. Functionality is often balanced with aesthetic appeal to ensure products arrive undamaged while also promoting the brand. A few examples include packaging for electronics, cosmetics, food items and retail display boxes.
Industrial packaging, on the other hand, is aimed at ensuring the efficient transportation and storage of goods within supply chains. Strength is prioritized over aesthetics, as industrial packaging solutions need to be able to handle heavy loads and withstand rough handling during transportation. Examples of industrial packaging include shipping containers for machinery, bulk packaging for chemicals, and palletized boxes for automotive parts.


What is industrial packaging and consumer packaging when it comes to design? Well, at least in the world of corrugated, consumer packaging often features high-quality printing, vibrant colors, and other elements that attract customer attention. The box itself is often designed for ease of use, including easy opening mechanisms and other user-friendly features. Consumer packaging solutions are often designed to fit specific products in order to enhance both protection and presentation.

The design of industrial corrugated packaging focuses more on durability and protection. These solutions often utilize thicker, stronger corrugated materials and customization is based on product efficiency needs and logistical efficiency—think reinforced corners and handles, and custom inserts.

Volume and Size

Finally, in terms of volume and size, consumer corrugated packaging can come in a wide variety of sizes and shapes to accommodate different consumer products. Consumer solutions are generally produced in smaller volumes and are tailored to specific product lines and retail needs.

Industrial packaging, however, is often manufactured in bulk to meet the demands of large-scale shipping and storage operations. Industrial boxes are also typically larger than consumer corrugated boxes, as the industrial products they are designed for are generally bulkier and heavier.

Industrial vs Consumer Packaging: How Are They Similar?

Finally, to fully answer the question, “What is industrial packaging and consumer packaging,” let’s take a look at a few of the similarities between the two.

First, material. Both consumer packaging and industrial packaging utilize the same basic materials, especially corrugated cardboard, which is known for its strength, durability, and lightweight properties.

Industrial and consumer packaging are also extremely customizable. They each offer flexibility in design to incorporate special features such as die-cut inserts, reinforcements, and custom shapes.

Axis Corrugated Provides Custom Solutions for Consumer and Industrial Packaging

At Axis Corrugated Container, we specialize in providing standard and custom corrugated packaging solutions for businesses in the consumer and industrial spaces. We are strategically located in the Research Triangle of North Carolina and are proud to provide solutions for businesses here and in surrounding states. Alongside our custom packaging capabilities, we also offer a variety of other services including high-quality printing, JIT-shipping, and VMI programs.

Are you looking for a packaging supplier that can meet your needs and deliver flexible solutions? Connect with us today to get started.