To contain, protect, preserve, communicate, promote and make transaction seamless; packaging matters hugely to products and brands. A great product deserves great packaging design. It is often the first impression and can be the difference between getting favourably noticed or ignored, so it is important that it is a good first impression.

 

Consumers have vast choice in every field. How we are made to feel about a product as a result of the packaging can help direct us to a sale. Most of the time we are confused by the boundless choice in front of us. Good packaging cuts through that choice, speaks to the target audience in a language it understands, telling us that it can satisfy our needs and ultimately makes the choice simple:

 

Pick me.

 

    • Creativity is important, but it should never get in the way of the core functions of the packaging design. It needs to protect the product and tell the consumer what the product is. It has to be clear what is inside the box.

 

    • Consumers equate price with quality. They also equate quality of packaging with quality. Basic materials and simple design actually has a place: if the product is low end, because it talks to the consumer who is looking for a low end product. The reverse is also true. Packaging that has clearly had time, effort and energy spent on it denotes the same for the product inside.

 

    • Lots of, if not all, products are sold online as well as offline. The thumbnail picture used strips the effectiveness of those cute little touches that worked so well in a bricks and mortar outlet. Product packaging is always getting simpler and bolder and this is why. Unless your product is only going to sell offline, the design needs to take multichannel retail into consideration. Obviously, some design factors don’t translate to the internet (you can’t feel the box on Amazon), but those that do, typography and colour choice for instance, matter even more.

 

    • The packaging represents the product, but also the brand behind the product. It should fit into the overarching brand strategy and take into consideration branding style and design cues (logo, associated colours etc).

 

  • Research. Knowing what the audience expects from similar products allows a designer to follow trends (helping the consumer to recognise the product) and step away from them (helping the product to stand out from the competition) when appropriate.

One size does not fit all. Different products and sales environments come with different constraints and opportunities. Speaking to a design agency with experience of creating design for product packaging is a solid first step toward getting packaging design that befits the product.