Making sure your packaging can cope with peaks in demand
Unless you have been completely distracted or on a social media hiatus of late there is no doubt that you will know that today (24th November 2017) is Black Friday.
Today is the day when there are bargains to be found both online and in-store. Keep in mind though all the packaging needed to get those purchases to consumers. Expert design and production techniques are needed to make sure that all those products get to their new owners safely, in excellent condition and without being tampered with.
History of Black Friday
Black Friday happens on the day after Thanksgiving in the United States. It started as a way to entice shoppers into starting their Christmas shopping – an official launch to the festive season if you like.
Ever since 1924 when the New York City department store Macy’s started its now traditional Thanksgiving Day parade, the day after was known as the official start of the Christmas shopping season as the store opened its doors and reduced its prices.
The term ‘Black Friday’ was originally used to refer to a US stock market crisis in the 1800s. It was not until the 1960s that the term was used to refer to the Friday after Thanksgiving.
Some claim that it refers to the fact that it is the day that retailers ‘move into the black’ and start making a profit for the year. Others claim it is related to the markdowns on prices.
Whatever the origin though Black Friday is set to be one of the biggest shopping day of the year – only closely followed by Cyber Monday and Boxing Day.
It was estimated that in 2016 £1.23billion was spent in the UK on Black Friday – this figure is for online sales only.
With an additional rise in spends the following Monday, now referred to as Cyber Monday the total estimated spend for the entire weekend totalled £6.5billion – one can only imagine the sheer volume of products being sent through the post or by courier.
With that in mind let’s turn our thoughts to the packaging.
Don’t overlook the packaging
Many people may be so excited to open their newly purchased items that they take little notice of the packaging that their purchases arrive in.
Without the right packaging items can be damaged in transit. Damaged items disappoint customers, cost companies additional money through refunds and replacements and can damage a well-earned brand reputation.
There are many considerations that go into creating the right packaging solution. For example the type of cardboard; single wall for lightweight items or double wall for heavier products that need more protection – maybe even tri-wall for extremely heavy duty items of high-value.
Packaging comes in a range of materials from corrugated cardboard to Correx® fluted plastic. There are coatings that can help with water resistance and techniques to stop high-value items from being tampered with in transit.
Other things to consider include whether the item needs protective foam to keep it really secure, or a Corstat® coating to protect electrical components from static.
And of course, you must ensure that your stock levels of packaging are sufficient to cope with the increased usage (with this additional demand usually hitting it’s maximum on what has been dubbed “Peak Packaging Monday“)
All of these decisions and more need to be taken. We have a team of talented and experienced designers at GWP Group thinking about all of these things so you don’t have to!
So, if you are joining in with Black Friday this year take a moment to appreciate the packaging your item arrived in. A lot of thought went into it.
Make sure your packaging is up to the Black Friday surge
If your online store, marketing, product selection and pricing are all on point, chances are you will see a surge in demand on Black Friday, Cyber Monday and the festive period beyond.
If you do experience improved sales, then make sure you don’t let your customer down through poor packaging that doesn’t protect in transit, slows down fulfilment times, or is just plain hard to use / open.
And don’t neglect the un-boxing experience – you should aim to surprise and delight your customers.
Need help with any of this? If so, please don’t hesitate to get in touch using the details below.