The Power of Packaging: Enhancing the Unboxing Experience

Power of the unboxing experience

Have you heard? Eighty percent of customers say their experience with a company is just as important as its product quality. Investing in the customer experience (CX) can be a powerful marketing tool — one that could pay off significantly. Over 84% of companies that improved CX have seen increased revenue, with some consumers willing to pay 18% or more for a product or service as a result.

Creating a positive and memorable unboxing experience is one way you can enhance your customers’ experiences with your brand. You can leave a lasting impression that turns into brand loyalty, social media publicity and rave reviews.

What Is Unboxing?

Unboxing refers to the process of opening and unpackaging a product. It incorporates everything from how the box and filler material look to the experience the consumer has while engaging with its contents.

The Psychology of the Unboxing Experience

The unboxing experience can make or break a brand’s image. Here’s why:

  • Perceived value: An amazing unboxing experience can transform a customer’s perception of your brand and the item they’ve purchased. Consumers get excited about packaging because it feels like receiving a gift, boosting that product’s perceived value. As you know, perceived value can greatly increase how attached a customer feels to your brand and influence their willingness to share about it. Items shipped with visually enhanced packaging are less prone to being returned than those in boring packaging.
  • Brand perception: The way a product is packaged and presented is one of your customer’s first impressions of your brand, and focusing on the unboxing experience is one way you can drive home a positive CX beyond sales interactions. This is especially important for e-commerce stores without the advantages of the in-store shopping experience.
  • Shareability: Unboxing videos are hugely popular across social media sites, and eye-catching, personalized packaging is a great way to gain traction online. It’s more fun to share a product with engaging and memorable packaging. Considering the power of influencer marketing and social media reviews, you can’t afford to miss the opportunity to impress.
  • Competitive edge: Prioritizing the unboxing experience gives you a competitive edge over companies that stick to standard product packaging. Even Amazon — easily the fiercest competitor for most businesses with their ownership of 37.8% of all online retail sales in the United States — sends items in boxes without any personalization or embellishments.

How to Create an Unboxing Experience No One Will Forget

Ready to leave your customers with a fun, engaging perception of your brand? Here’s how to craft an unboxing experience that will leave them wanting more.

1. Use High-Quality Materials

Every part of your e-commerce packaging matters, from the shipping box to the secondary packaging and filler material. Each component tells a story and works together to create a cohesive visual presentation. An elevated experience lets the customer know they’ve invested their money wisely and they’re getting the value of what they paid from the start.

High-quality materials can protect your product during transit, minimizing the chances of costly product damage and returns. Assess the item’s journey as you choose packaging and shipping materials — will it travel by land, sea, air or a combination of these routes? Consider implementing packaging upgrades, such as double-walled boxes, for items that will touch several hands before reaching the consumer.

2. Implement Creative Design

Product packaging is your chance to paint a creative picture of your brand. Avoid boxes and materials printed with stock images or forgettable filler like plain packing peanuts or insulated wrap.

Make design choices that engage as many senses as possible, and choose colors that influence the customer’s emotions and perceptions. Implement storytelling by choosing boxes with printing on the inside and out and opting for branded tapes, tissue papers and product inserts.

3. Use Personalization

Customers expect personalized interactions

Over 70% of customers expect personalized interactions from companies, with 78% of people more likely to shop with a brand again after a personalized experience. Seventy-six percent of shoppers can even feel frustrated at a lack of personalization.

Incorporate things like handwritten cards thanking them for their purchase. You could even include free samples customized to their shopper profile or purchase with an added note explaining why you picked a particular product.

4. Emphasize Sustainability

Sustainable packaging matters more than ever, with at least one in four shoppers saying sustainable options drive them to want to shop with a brand. Nearly half of consumers are even willing to pay more for things like recyclable boxes and inserts. Going sustainable can also benefit your company in other ways by optimizing existing resources and minimizing wasted packaging materials.

Here are a few ways you can introduce eco-friendliness to your unboxing experience:

  • Choose sturdy, stylish box designs that customers can reuse.
  • Opt for packaging filler sourced from post-consumer or post-industrial content.
  • Integrate compostable, biodegradable or plant-based materials like hemp.
  • Include a list of recycling instructions or reuse ideas on a product insert or printed inside the box.
  • Choose corrugated boxes to minimize the amount of filler needed to protect the product.
  • Use boxes with flaps and interlocking mechanisms to reduce how much adhesive is needed for shipment.
  • Print on both sides of product inserts to maximize usable space.

5. Prioritize Functionality

Nobody enjoys wrestling with a difficult-to-open package — 19% of customers say frustrating packaging turns them off from shopping with a company again. Many have even hurt themselves or damaged the product while attempting to unbox an item. Packages that take too long to open can also stop reviewers from posting an unboxing video online.

Perform unboxing trial runs and note how long each stage of the opening process takes you. Try to reduce the need for extra tools like scissors or wire cutters. Pay attention to how the product looks during each step — does it remain front and center and easy to access, or is it hidden beneath layers of filler material? Consider how you can improve each part of the experience, like implementing easy-pull tabs along sealed edges.

Tips for an Amazing Unboxing Experience

Take your customer’s unboxing experience to the next level with these tips:

  • Understand your audience: Over 70% of consumers feel brand loyalty is more about being understood and valued than it is about receiving special discounts or shopping perks. Take the time to understand who is buying your products, what they value and how they will use the item. For example, if you know your audience is largely trendy Gen Z shoppers, incorporate elements that make your package easier to share online, like reverse lettering that’s selfie-friendly.
  • Keep branding consistent: Custom packaging lets you showcase your brand through colors, images, fonts and slogans. Stay consistent across the customer journey, implementing similar color schemes and design choices on your website, socials and product packaging. This will make your brand easier for customers to find and recall while also creating a curated, cohesive appearance.
  • Know that small details add up: Even the smallest packaging details add up to create a more memorable and engaging unboxing experience. Highlight what matters to your brand most. For example, if you share a portion of your profits with any causes or organizations, showcase those figures on a product insert so the customer can feel like they’re a part of something larger.
  • Incorporate a call to action: Make it easy for customers to share their unboxing experience by including unique QR codes, your social media handles and branded hashtags that let you follow up on what they share online.
  • Collaborate with design experts: Working with design experts gives you access to experienced professionals who have a pulse on the industry’s trends. The team at Bolt Boxes will work with you one-on-one to develop an engaging packaging and unboxing experience that aligns with your brand through custom-printed boxes and secondary packaging.

Let Bolt Boxes Help You Craft an Unforgettable Experience

Create unboxing experience

With Bolt Boxes, you can choose the best custom box or mailer style for your product, complete with eye-catching color, layout and printing — all designed and manufactured under one roof for fast turnaround timesReach out to a member of our team today and see how we can help bring your unboxing vision to life!