Profitable eCommerce entrepreneurs understand the major role that product packaging plays in regards to customer retention and satisfaction. Further, effective packaging has the power to expand marketing opportunities and positively influence a customer's view of your brand. Yes, implementing unique packaging ideas is a guaranteed method to put your business on the path to true eCommerce success.

No doubt, as a busy entrepreneur, you have a lot of responsibilities. Crafting an effective method of product packaging does not have to be time-consuming nor difficult. Rather, take a few moments to decide which of these simple, yet powerful techniques you can begin to implement.

Let's consider eight unique packaging ideas that can improve your eCommerce business:

  1. Personal notes
  2. Branded tissue paper
  3. Creative filler materials
  4. Stickers
  5. Custom tape
  6. Unique package ties
  7. Built-in functionality
  8. Reusability

1. Personal Notes

Traditionally, the eCommerce transactional process operates like this: the customer purchases a product, the customer pays for the product, and you ship the product in the mail. This online procedure, while effective, leaves very little room for any human interaction. However, to build a lasting relationship with your customers (and you definitely should try to build a lasting relationship with your customers) include a little touch of human gratitude by leaving a small note on or in the package.

For most purchases, a "thanks for shopping with me," will suffice. Nonetheless, if a thank-you note doesn't seem appropriate or "on-brand," feel free to include another written message of your choosing. If the customer purchased a functional product, you can include a short, instructional tip to get the best use of the item. For purchases relating to life events, like the arrival of new baby, milestone anniversary, or purchase of a new home, jot down a note of congrats and well wishes for the customer.

As regularly as possible in your line of work, strive to hand-write these notes, even if that requires keeping the sentiments brief. Most often, short and simple is all that is needed to make a positive, lasting impression on your customers.

2. Branded Tissue Paper

Delicate, boxed products often require a form of protective filler to prevent damage and shifting during the delivery process. However, boring, plain tissue paper that is quickly discarded does little to improve a customer's view of your brand.

If you utilize large quantities of tissue paper, consider creating a personalized design with the aid of an online program like Uline. This allows you to customize colors and print artwork onto the paper itself. In harmony with your brand image, don't hesitate to be creative, including items like your logo, catchphrase, symbols, or other relevant doodles that appeal to your audience.

Personalizing tissue paper is a simple, yet unique packaging idea that helps keep your brand consistent. Plus, it adds a beautiful visual element to the unboxing process that is guaranteed to delight customers and enforces why they should continue to shop only with you.

3. Creative Filler Materials

Often, a fragile product requires additional filler material to properly secure it for delivery. However, before pulling out the bubble wrap, brainstorm some ways that you can more effectively incorporate into the package your brand, image, morals, or personality.

Here are some creative options:

  • Wood wool with earthy or masculine products
  • Torn or cut newspaper strips with nostalgic items
  • Magazine clippings for chic, fashion-forward purchases
  • Shredded colored paper with fun, cheeky products
  • Bags of popped popcorn included with jarred or canned foods
  • Sanitary bagged cotton balls for beauty or cosmetic purchases

Of course, ensuring your product is delivered unbroken is of utmost concern. Nevertheless, replacing those dreaded packing peanuts with a unique filler not only creates a more appealing unboxing experience but also maintains brand consistency throughout the purchase process.

4. Stickers

Gifts and surprises have an inevitable way of eliciting joy. After all, everyone enjoys receiving something unexpected, no matter the size or value. Provide your customers with the satisfaction of getting more than they anticipated by including some custom-printed stickers in each package. Thus, shoppers will recognize your brand as one that goes above and beyond in small ways, even after the sale is completed.

Of what use is a sticker unless it is, well, stuck to something? Therefore, many people choose to decorate their laptops, notebooks, doors, and cars with stickers they have collected over time. No doubt your customers do, too. This artistic display turns customers into real-life, walking advertisements. Without compromising a creative, unique sticker design, don't hesitate to tastefully include your logo or company name. This way, your small gift to the customer doubles as a potential marketing opportunity.

Alternatively, consider using stickers to enhance your packaging design. Some brands with a more urban image find "sticker-bombing" as an effective, appealing way to decorate a plain shipping box - simply, cover the entire surface with overlapping stickers. On the other hand, you can utilize one simple, sophisticated sticker to seal together some tissue paper or affix a label.

5. Custom Tape

Gone are the days of mundane, brown shipping tape on the outside of your packages. Rather, invest in some attractive, personally-branded shipping tape to take your product packaging to the next level.

Incorporate your logo, brand colors, or even seasonal themes to give a personalized touch to the outside of the box. In this way, maintaining brand image even among the more insignificant details really pulls the whole package together. After all, in an online world where people can be whoever they choose, customers are more inclined to trust a stable, consistent business.

6. Unique Package Ties

Skip the shipping tape altogether and opt for another unique packaging idea: creative package ties. Utilize ribbon, twine, shiny string, or beautifully twisted rope to seal your product. Instead of haphazardly slicing through heavy tape, your consumers will feel as if they are unwrapping a carefully chosen gift! Thus, they perceive your company as one that adds value and intention to the sales process.

However, use caution when securing your packages for shipment. Some carriers have regulations on proper sealing techniques, and you do want to ensure your product arrives at the customer’s doorstep in perfect condition. In this case, consider taping the outside box securely, and use the unique ties only on the inside packaging.

7. Built-In Functionality

The purpose of functional packaging is a design that enhances the experience and value perceived by the consumer. This value can vary depending on the needs of your clients and specifics of your products. Thus, take some time to consider your customers’ unboxing experience, first-time product use, or common questions. Then, adjust your packaging to address them accordingly.

For example, did you know that take-out Chinese food carriers actually open up and fold into perfectly-sized serving plates? Further, many households no doubt take advantage of the laundry detergent cap that doubles as a detergent measuring cup.

Perhaps, though, your company cannot make an extensive change to product design at this time. However, you can start small, altering your package in a slight way that enhances the usability of your product. For example, would visual instructions inside the box help users opening their new items? Or, could you include a "cut-out" ruler or level on the box, to assist with related measuring issues?

8. Reusability

Inevitably, every online retailer has to deal with returns. However, the level of ease you provide your consumers when exchanging an item greatly influences if they will purchase from you again. Thus, if your product niche isn't enhanced by built-in functionality, consider a similar alternative: package reusability for returns.

Resealable garment shipping bags are just one fantastic display of package reusability. Usually, on the outside of the packaging, there are instructions denoting exactly where to tear open the bag. Then, located somewhere near the top, on the inside, is a sticky strip of sealant. That way, should the garment need returned, the consumer simply places the item back in the bag, unpeels the sticker backing, and folds it over to seal everything once again.

Providing your customer with a seamless, simple return process by means of reusable packaging is a great way to enhance customer experience, consequently retaining more shoppers in the long term.

Unique Packaging Ideas To Make Your Brand Stand Out

Considering all the eCommerce competition, your brand needs to stand out in order to succeed. Do so from the very first impression, by implementing these unique packaging ideas today.

That way, you demonstrate your business is unique, memorable, and trustworthy, encouraging shoppers to visit your online store again, and again.