Boxes, bags, gift baskets, ribbons, bows, and fill. When it comes to packaging, do you know what your customers want? Businesses spend a lot of time focusing on what is going in the packaging, perfecting and refining their products, but they also need to spend some time on their packaging. Customer trends towards eco-friendly packaging are gaining momentum, with Millennials leading the way in refusing single-use plastic bags and packaging choices. Millennials are poised to be the nation’s biggest spenders and are moving into their prime spending years. Both are major reasons for businesses to evolve to accommodate their purchasing priorities. Meet customer demand by introducing some eco-friendly packaging options that are sustainable for your business.
What does eco-friendly packaging mean?Packaging made from recycled or renewable materials that produce little to no waste. Eco-friendly packaging is typically safe and sustainable for businesses and the environment.
Cut waste, satisfy your customers, and improve your bottom line with eco-friendly packaging. Eco-friendly packaging, also known as sustainable packaging, includes several different types of packaging, including:
- Compostable Packaging
- Recycled and Recyclable Packaging
- Dual-Use Packaging
- Collectible Packaging and Packaging as part of the product
What’s better than biodegradable? Compostable packaging is packaging that is capable of disintegrating into natural elements in a compost environment. Packaging typically must occur within about 90 days, and once disintegrated, this packaging leaves no toxicity in the soil. Compostable packaging is more than packaging simply labeled biodegradable. Compostable packaging has a time frame attached, whereas biodegradable is much broader as nearly everything will biodegrade in 10,000 years. Compostable packaging can be bags, pouches, labels, and more.
Closely related to compostable packaging is using packaging that can be recycled, or even developing packaging that comes from recycled sources. Recyclable packaging can include things like paper bags, packaging made from corn starch, and biodegradable air peanuts. Businesses can also seek out packaging materials that are made from post-consumer or post-industrial recycled materials. Recycled cardboard and paper products are available as are recycled plastic shipping materials and tools.
When is a box more than a box? When it’s also a video projector. Dual-use packaging is all about convenience, and it means developing packaging that does more than simply deliver your product. You might develop packaging that doubles as a greeting card, an educational toy, or that can be broken off into smaller containers for those on the go.
Similar to dual-use packaging is the idea of collectible packaging or having packaging be part of the product. Collectible packaging often means releasing a product in a variety of limited edition or seasonal packages. The product inside is the same, but the unique packaging might include original fan art or some other incentive to persuade customers to keep and likely display the packaging, turning it into a collectible item in its own right. A business might also seek to make packaging part of the product. For example, a spreadable food product that incorporates a wooden knife shape for the lid or a toy vehicle that comes in a tube only to have the tube become the vehicle’s body.
What could choosing sustainable packaging say about your business? Incorporating eco-friendly packaging could say that your company is informed and relatable. It also provides you with an opportunity to show off your creativity by developing fun and practical packaging solutions. According to the ASI, promo bags generate 3,300 impressions in their lifetime. Promo bags are kept for an average of 11 months, with the low cost-per-impression of 2/10 of a cent. Make sure your sustainable packaging is memorable, creating a connection to your product and your customer.
Customer satisfaction isn’t the only reason for businesses to be seriously exploring sustainable packaging solutions. More and more jurisdictions across the United States have instituted bans and fees on various types of plastics, including plastic bags, plastic carryout containers, single-use plastic straws, and polystyrene. While California passed the first statewide ban in 2014, eight states including, New York, Oregon, Hawaii, and Vermont, as well as hundreds of cities have banned single use plastics in recent years.
New technologies and processes are making sustainable packaging more accessible and cost-effective than ever before. Keep up with consumer demands and help your bottom line at the same time. Safeguard understands the importance of selecting the right packaging to showcase your brand. Your local advisor can help you make a good first impression, give us a call to get started.