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The evolving digital shopping experience and packaging

A woman opening a parcelOnline Shopping PackagingSustainable packaging

We’ve all shopped online, right? Well you’ve probably noticed, that internet retailing is booming, and the digital shopping experience is evolving.

To cope with our demands for convenience and product choice, e-retailers are having to change with the times. If you work for an internet retailer or a third-party logistics company, you’ll know it’s always a race to stay ahead of the game. With market-leaders starting to experiment with options like drone deliveries (1) and the mounting consumer pressure to stay sustainable, you’ve got a lot to contend with if you want to keep up.

What’s packaging’s part in all this?

There’s no getting away from packaging when it comes to ecommerce. If you’re an e-retailer you’ll be using packaging of some kind to get your products to your customers.

As packaging is often the first physical touch point your customers have with your brand it’s important to get it right. Therefore, your packaging will need to evolve when the shopping experience you offer changes…

So, what does your packaging need to keep up with as the digital landscape evolves?

Flexible, convenient & high-tech delivery options

Convenience is high on the digital shopping priority list. We all want to receive deliveries at a time that suits us and avoid the dreaded “Sorry, we’ve missed you” card.

Your packaging will need to fit in with this, so choosing boxes and bags that easily fit through letterboxes is a solid decision.

New methods of delivery, such as drone drops, may change the packaging you need to choose as well. Items prone to damage may need extra protection as parcels will be exposed more to the elements and risk breakage more easily.

Keeping up with demand – investing in packaging automation

Consumer demand to buy online continues to expand. Are you concerned about future proofing your packaging operation because of this?

Increasing numbers of e-retailers like you are turning to packaging automation. There are so many packaging touch points that can be automated from bagging and boxing through to taping, labelling and even palletisation.

Reviewing your growth forecasts and checking if your current packing operation can handle future demand is essential for any internet retailer.

Sustainable supply chains & the circular economy

In the last year, we’ve seen requests for sustainable packaging shoot up. Plastic packaging is under the consumer microscope, so we’ve seen a noticeable shift to paper-based packaging options.

For example, if you’re shipping clothes, you could replace plastic mailing bags with paper ones. You could also switch your regular void fill to a compostable version if protection during shipping is a concern for your business.

Another wonderful way you can contribute to the circular economy is investing in packaging recycling & reward schemes for your customers. A great, long-standing example is M.A.C’s “Back to M.A.C”. The program sees  customers receive a free lipstick for every 6 empty packaging containers they return. The primary packaging is recycled  so it’s a win for the consumer and a win for the environment!

Specialist packaging support for internet retailers

Our Smartpack team is dedicated to working with eCommerce and 3PLs. Get in touch with us to book an appointment and take advantage of our packaging expertise. Email, complete our contact form or call 01902 496 666.