Let me begin this article, by giving the answer: yes and yes. Product packaging is an important tool in marketing. How many times have you bought something just by looking at its packaging? I would presume a lot many times. I, for example, am guilty of buying something just by looking at its packaging. There were times when I regretted buying the product, nonetheless, I did buy it.
You see, the market is filled with several substitutes for a similar product that may perform the same purpose/function. Thus, marketing experts have (for a long time) shifted their focus on product packaging. Why? Because according to research, it has been stated that product packaging does affect consumer’s buying decisions. Let’s dig a little deeper and try to understand more the effects of product packaging on customer’s buying decisions.
What is Product Packaging?
Product packaging simply refers to the process of wrapping or enclosing the actual product inside any kind of package for the primary purposes of keeping it safe from any external damage or conveying important information about the product to the buyer. In marketing, product packaging refers to the entire process of production, design, and provide customers with information about the product.
In the last couple of years, there has been a shift from a seller-oriented market towards a customer-oriented market. Due to advancements in technology and an increase in competition, this shift has “forced” producers and manufactures to compete. Even old-timers have been pushed to make amends and adopt new changes in order to survive in an ever-changing market. For this reason, product packaging has now become one of the key elements in today’s marketing. For instance, many organizations have now allotted a Research and Development Department in order to design the right package that would take into consideration a variety of other factors that influence a customer’s buying decision.
How Does Product Packaging Influence Customer’s Buying Decision?
The packing of a product affects a consumers ’ buying decision more than often. This can be confirmed by personal experience. Recently, I was planning on purchasing a Bluetooth speaker and I choose Philips (a popular brand in India), however, I couldn’t decide whether I should invest in the product or not. The reason being the flimsy and average-looking packaging. Even for Philips that has created a solid brand image in India, I felt that the cost was a bit too much from what I could “see”. You see, from a customer’s viewpoint, it is important that we are getting value for money, and thus, we accept (even) the packaging to be good.
Product packaging is like a golden ticket for marketers as it provides them with an opportunity to communicate with their consumers. A lot can be deduced about a brand from the way its packaging is designed. Consumers spend approximately 30 to 40 minutes on a shopping session and during that time, they look at hundreds of products. This is where packaging can be determined as good or bad. It is the time when the packaging of the product can make the customer pick it up, put it in the cart, and buy it.
Product packaging is important but for brands that are just entering the market, it is consequential. It is already difficult to enter the market but “surviving” in that market is a whole another level. That is why it is important to make the products “stand out” amongst the hundreds of substitutes already available in the market. It is important for brands to understand what is the current “aesthetic” in the market? Just a glimpse at the products’ packaging and that is what it takes for a customer to buy a product.
What Should Good Product Packaging Achieve?
Let’s take a look at some of the things, one must consider in order to achieve good product packaging:
- Offers Value for Money – The overall product should offer satisfaction to the customer.
- Practicality & Efficiency – No one wants to buy a product that is aesthetically pleasing, however, useless or impractical to use. In the end, we pay for product utility.
- Innovative, Creative, & Original – No customer wants to pay for a product that is a total copy of another product down to its packaging.
- Environment Friendly – Another important thing to consider is “going green” with the packaging. We are already producing billions of tonnes of waste each year. The earth needs some time to breathe now and good environment-friendly packaging would do just that.
- Honesty – One of the main things is to offer “the truth” on the packaging. The primary purpose of packaging is to inform its customers and thus, it is quite crucial for marketers to provide honest information.
Does Packaging Make any Difference in Sales?
Any company that is into selling or manufacturing products keeps packaging on the top of its list of priorities. Packaging allows customers to get of sense of what the brand is? and what it actually believes in? This allows customers to create a bond with the brand. As a result of this bond, brands create a loyal fan following. This is notable specializing in retail sales as the right packaging design can attract the customers and make the product stand out next to a rack filled with the competitor’s product.
In this article, I discussed how the packaging of a product can impact the life of a particular product in the market. Smart and innovative packaging ensures that the target demographic feels an emotional attachment to a brand. One crucial element of a successful packaging is an icon. The Paper Worker states, “Emotions are often also connected to brand icons as memories and feelings that can be brought up on sight, leading to long-term relationships between the brand and consumer. Consumers often make snap decisions while purchasing a product.” That is the reason why the first impression matter a lot.