This website uses cookies. Learn more
Back to Blog

Designing for E-commerce: Packaging in the Digital Age

When designing packaging for e-commerce, you have to think about how it looks on the screen. Remember, your customers can’t touch or feel your product through their devices; your packaging has to do all the talking! But how? It's all about creating that visual appeal that draws people in, making them hit 'add to cart' without a second thought. You want your packaging design to matter and to be so enticing that customers are already dreaming about the unboxing experience, tempted to opt for next-day delivery because the wait is too unbearable.
At Noramble, we understand the power of first impressions. In a world where an unboxing video can send your product or brand into viral fame overnight, the stakes are higher than ever. We design packaging that doesn’t just stand out, but promises an experience, not just a product.
8 min read
06 May 2024
Desiging for E Commerce packaging in the digital age

Protecting Products During Transit

In e-commerce, packaging design must have a balance between aesthetic appeal and functional protection. It's not enough for packaging to simply look good; it must also safeguard the products within from the hazards of shipping. Products that arrive damaged can lead to customer dissatisfaction and harm a brand's reputation, even if the damage occurred during delivery and was not directly the seller's fault. It’s your brand, so it’s your responsibility.

Effective packaging design incorporates materials that are both durable and lightweight. This combination ensures that packages can withstand bumps and drops during shipping without adding significant weight, which could increase shipping costs. Choosing the right packaging material and design can vary greatly depending on the type of product — whether it’s cosmetics, beverages, or household items. Each requires specific considerations to ensure that the product arrives in the same condition as it left the production line.

Considering the unboxing experience can also serve as a key brand touchpoint and even a marketing tool, the visual aspect of packaging cannot be ignored. This dual focus on protection and presentation helps to fulfil the practical needs of safe transit while also enhancing the customer experience.

Here we are outlining the customer journey, highlighting the consequences of inadequate packaging:

  1. Customer Purchases Product: A customer buys a high-end smartphone, expecting it to arrive in perfect condition.

  2. Inadequate Packaging: The smartphone is shipped in packaging that prioritises aesthetics over functionality, lacking sufficient protection against impacts during transit.

  3. Product Damage: Several customers receive their new devices with cracked screens or damaged bodies due to poor packaging.

  4. Negative Feedback: Customers take to social media and tech review sites to express their dissatisfaction, stirring negative attention.

  5. Brand Image Tarnished: The negative feedback leads to a tarnished brand image and diminished customer trust.

  6. Impact on Brand: This scenario underscores how poor packaging design can make or break your brand, emphasising the crucial role of effective packaging in the customer journey.

Ultimately, the responsibility for choosing the right packaging falls on the brand. Ensuring products are delivered intact and beautifully presented is crucial for building trust and satisfaction among consumers, influencing their decision to return and make future purchases.

Delivery driver parcel

Unboxing Experience

So what’s the big deal when it comes to the unboxing experience? It’s the moment your customers have been waiting for in most cases. Think about it: they've been tracking their package, counting down the days until arrival. This is your opportunity to make all that anticipation worthwhile. It’s not just about opening a box; it’s about unveiling your brand story, your product's story, in a way that captivates them. 

As you know, good packaging design does more than protect your product; it speaks to your customers. A memorable unboxing experience can convert a casual shopper into a lifelong fan and even a brand advocate for your brand on social media platforms. It’s about creating connections with your customers.

This magic moment involves engaging customers' senses through both visual and tactile elements. The design of the packaging, the quality of the materials, and even the ease of opening the box—all these details add up to create a satisfying experience that might even be shared in an exciting unboxing video. There’s nothing worse when it takes forever to dig your way into the item. Everything about the package should reinforce the excitement of what's waiting inside.

Unboxing experience packaging

Reducing Material Use for Online Sales

Sustainability has evolved from a packaging design trend into a fundamental business practice, especially in the e-commerce world where packaging waste can quickly accumulate. With 27% consumers avoiding brands that use unsustainable packaging, it's a risk you simply can't afford to take. The move toward eco-friendly practices isn't just about cutting down on materials — it's about innovating how we package products in a way that safeguards the earth without sacrificing the integrity or visual appeal of the packaging.

The key is to craft innovative packaging solutions that are as efficient as they are environmentally conscious. This means integrating recycled and biodegradable materials wherever possible and designing with minimalism in mind to reduce waste. Smart packaging features like QR codes can be included to provide customers with easy access to information about the sustainability efforts behind their purchase, which adds value to their shopping experience.

This approach doesn't just benefit the environment—it also connects with consumers, particularly Millennials and Gen Z, who increasingly favour brands that demonstrate a commitment to sustainable packaging. By aligning packaging strategies with these values, companies can meet consumer expectations and contribute to a greener future simultaneously.

Cane Packaging 1
Cane Packaging 3

Here at Noramble, we’re not just about making things look pretty. Our packaging designs are backed by a deep understanding of brand strategy and consumer behaviour. We offer a free brand review for those looking to elevate their packaging game—because we believe in building brands, not just boxes.

In the world of online shopping, your package is often the first physical touchpoint customers have with your brand. Make it count. Ready to make your brand the one they remember, the one they return to, and the one they recommend? Drop by Noramble and let’s work together.

Start a project

Start a project