The Importance of Packaging
Amazon Product packaging design is one of the most important, yet underrated, elements of your Amazon marketing. You can optimize the content on your product detail pages and invest in all the right pay per click ads, but if your product is not visually appealing to customers, they won’t buy it. Period.
Furthermore, the customer journey doesn’t end after a purchase has been made. Once a shopper receives their order, the design of your packaging has a significant impact on how they perceive the quality of your product. Give the same shopper two identical products, one in impressive, high-quality packaging and the other in a boring cardboard box, and the former will win out in customer satisfaction every time.
Still skeptical? Just think about the feeling of excitement you get when you open a nicely wrapped gift. Or the inexplicable virality of unboxing videos. You simply cannot deny the impact presentation has on the customer experience. Ultimately, the design of your package can impact:
Qualities of Great Packaging Design
As you can see, packaging design is an instrumental component of your Amazon business and one that is worth investing in. Don’t make the mistake of just checking design off your to-do list and calling it a day. You have to think carefully and strategically about what your design is communicating to customers and how it compares to the rest of the marketplace. A truly great packaging design should check the following boxes:
The idea here is simple: people like things that look nice. Aesthetically pleasing packaging design will stop a consumer in their tracks and, at the very least, get them to take a second look at your product. Once you catch their eye, you are that much closer to a click and a purchase.
Quality and visual appeal also go hand in hand. The more impressive the packaging, the higher the perceived quality and the more money shoppers are willing to spend. Why? Because beauty instills an inherent sense of trust in people and reassures them of the satisfaction they will get from purchasing your product.
Targets the Right Audience
Beauty is in the eye of the beholder. Therefore, the definition of “visually appealing” packaging varies with the audience you are targeting. The person buying fishing hooks, for example, likely has different packaging preferences than someone searching for eyeliner.
Whoever your target consumer is, keep that person in mind as you are choosing colors, typography and graphics. You might even consider running your design decisions by someone within your target demographic. After all, the most important opinion is that of the person who will be buying your product.
Reflects Your Brand
Since online shoppers do not have the luxury of walking into your store and experiencing your brand for themselves, your product packaging has to do a lot of the heavy lifting in communicating your brand story to consumers. That being said, every aspect of your packaging, from the color palette you pick to the copy you choose to include, should reflect who your brand is and what it represents.
Additionally, it should do so in a way that is cohesive with existing brand assets. If you have your own website or happen to operate a brick and mortar store, your Amazon packaging should feel cohesive with these touchpoints. That way, if an Amazon shopper does happen to visit your website or store, they will enjoy a seamless brand experience.
Communicates Clearly and Effectively
It takes the average shopper less than 5 seconds to decide whether or not they are going to buy a product. This means that most shoppers are not carefully reading through your product bullet points and description. More likely, they are making their purchase decision by scrolling through your product photos.
This puts a lot of onus on your packaging to communicate your product’s key benefits and convince consumers to buy – all in under 5 seconds. You don’t have the time to clutter your packaging with long blocks of copy or extraneous content. Be clear about your product, and do so in a concise, eye-catching way.
Brands have found many creative techniques for communicating in simple, yet engaging ways. For example, pull quotes are a unique mechanism for featuring product benefits, consumer reviews and other brand messages. Think about similar techniques you can use to quickly explain your product and tempt the consumer to make a purchase. Yes, this is a challenge. But when done well, it can send your sales through the roof.
Original and Differentiated from Competitors
Amazon is filled with thousands of similar products, all competing for the same consumers. To stand out, you need to offer something your competitors cannot – even if it is as simple as a better packaging design. To truly make your mark, your packaging should be, of course, differentiated from your competitors, but also ownable to your brand. This means there is something distinctive about your design that competitors cannot copy.
That being said, you should always perform an audit of your competitor’s packaging when designing your own. This will give you a feel for current trends and designs, putting you in a better position to create something truly unique.
Typography, color, packaging shape and packaging material can all be great ways to differentiate yourself.
Practical and Convenient
At the end of the day, packaging is simply a means of organizing, storing, protecting and transporting a product. Therefore, it should be as practical and user-friendly as it is beautiful and eye-catching. This is especially true when a product’s packaging influences how it is used. The packaging’s size, shape and material all have an impact on its functionality.
If you are redesigning packaging for an existing product, this can be an excellent opportunity to address consumer pain points around functionality and make the product easier to use. For example, Heinze ketchup redesigned their packaging several years back and flipped their bottle to put the cap on the bottom. This solved a huge pain point for customers, who were sick of having to shake the bottle or turn it upside down just to get the ketchup out.
Do not be afraid to look for these kinds of innovations when designing your packaging. Just because things have always been done a certain way does not mean that is the best way to do it. Consider interviewing consumers before you kick off design and ask them to assess your current packaging. You may uncover design flaws you didn’t even know existed that can be addressed during the redesign.
A Few Additional Tips
Keep an Eye on Color
Color trends are changing all the time, and they vary greatly from industry to industry. For example, in the past, black was rarely if ever used in food packaging. Now it is becoming increasingly common as more modern and contemporary designs are being adopted. Know how color is being used throughout your industry and use your best judgment to decide where you can break the rules.
Be Very Strategic About the Typography You Choose
Yes, you want something beautiful and eye-catching, but above all else, it should be legible. Nothing will turn a potential customer off faster than text that is difficult to read.
Invest in Good Photography
You can have the world’s most beautiful, original and functional packaging, but if the photos on your product detail page do not capture the appeal of your design, all your strategy and hard work were for nothing. Amazon shoppers do not have the opportunity to see your packaging in person, so it is up to your photography to accurately show off your product. Make sure you are investing in high-quality photography that will make your packaging design look its best.
Give Yourself a Leg Up on the Competition
Every day new sellers flock to the Amazon marketplace. As the competition increases and it becomes harder and harder to differentiate your product, more sellers are discovering the benefits of great packaging design.
As your competitors improve the design of their products, it becomes more difficult for you to hold onto your market share. The sooner you enhance your own packaging, the easier it will be for you to keep the competition at bay by drawing in new consumers and building brand loyalty among your current customers. Impeccable Amazon product packaging design is one competitive advantage you cannot afford to miss.