How to Ship Fragile Items In Custom Boxes

how to ship fragile items in custom boxes

If the products you ship are fragile, choosing the right shipping materials and methods should be a top priority. The shipping process is full of bumps in the road — literal and metaphorical. These bumps have the potential to damage your products in transit. Every customer wants to unbox their new product and find it in pristine condition, free of dents, scratches or broken pieces. As a product seller or supplier, you’ll need to know how to ship fragile items.

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Best Practices for Shipping Fragile Items

Making the right shipping decisions will help keep your products undamaged during transit. The right box size, material, shape and padding will offer product protection. Follow best practices for packaging and shipping fragile items. Here are some key tips for how to send fragile items.

1. Pick the Best-Sized Box

One of the most important aspects of fragile shipping is the box’s dimensions. When packing delicate items for shipping, you should choose a box that’s only slightly larger than the item. Both excess space and too little space can be an issue. Too much space within the box will cause contents to shift around during travel, and shipping larger boxes incurs higher fees. However, no extra space will leave no room for protective packing materials.

To pick the right box size, start by measuring your products. Then add one to two extra inches of space on all sides of the item. Keep in mind that standard box sizes are rarely the perfect size for unique products. It’s best to order custom-sized boxes. With Bolt Boxes, you can customize your box’s length, width and depth.

2. Choose the Right Boxing Materials

Choosing strong, sturdy box materials will help keep your fragile items safe. Explore different box material options and choose something heavy-duty, such as corrugated cardboard with a thick flute. Corrugated cardboard contains three layers — the inside liner, outside liner and a layer of fluting between. The fluting has a ruffled or wave-like shape, which helps absorb impact for better durability. The thicker the flute, the greater the protection it offers.

If you ship fragile items, choose the best box materials. While flimsy materials may save you upfront costs, they’re more likely to result in damaged products, costing you in the long run. Besides, you can create a better brand reputation using superior materials. Customers notice these kinds of details. It’s best to choose a trustworthy box material when packaging a fragile item.

3. Decide on a Box Shape

Box shape also affects product security. It’s important to choose the most effective box shape for your items. Some of the available options include:

  • C-series mailers: C-series boxes are a widely popular option, thanks to their structural strength and versatility. They’re made from durable corrugated cardboard. They close with one end folding into the others.
  • Loading boxes: End-loading boxes have both top and bottom flaps. They overlap each other, creating a stronger barrier for your fragile items.
  • Regular-slotted carton (RSC) shipping boxes: These are the traditional box option and are highly cost-effective. They open with four overlapped top flaps.

If none of these options seem right for your product, the team at Bolt Boxes will custom-engineer a solution for you. All you have to do is send in a sample of your product, and we’ll design the right box shape and size for you. Custom boxes are often the best choice.

4. Use Protective Padding

When preparing your fragile items for shipping, you’ll need to use protective padding. The right size box should allow for protective materials on all sides of your fragile item. You’ll find you have many different options for packing materials, including:

protective padding options

  • Foam: You might want to use foam enclosures molded to your specific products. It can be an expensive solution, but it will keep your products in place, protecting them and ensuring a professional presentation during unboxing.
  • Packing peanuts: Loose packing peanuts can also protect your products, but they might not keep them from moving out of place.
  • Crinkle paper: Crinkle paper will offer a similar level of protection as packing peanuts. One advantage of crinkle paper is that you can customize its color to fit your brand.
  • Bubble wrap: A traditional packaging option is bubble wrap, which comes in a variety of sizes.
  • Airbags: Air-filled pillows are another effective way to protect your products. They take up little space when uninflated, which can be an advantage.
  • Individual boxes: Some product sellers choose to encase fragile elements in their own miniature boxes within the larger shipping box. This practice might help keep the inner elements safe.
  • Biodegradable options: You can appeal to eco-conscious consumers by using biodegradable packaging options, such as those made from cornstarch or mushroom.

5. Label the Box as Fragile

Of course, you’ll also need to label the box as fragile to let your shipping carrier know they need to handle the box with care. You can use a stamp or sticker that reads “fragile” or “handle with care.” You might also want to include special designations for the type of item you’re shipping. A custom-printed label could include an image of the product within, letting your shippers know what they’re handling. You can include “fragile” messaging on the printed label.

While there’s no guarantee every handler will handle your boxes with the utmost care, using clear labels shows effort on your part to protect your products. If the item does end up damaged, your shipping company will hold more responsibility.

6. Use Special Handling Services

For your especially valuable items, you might consider using special handling services. You’ll have to pay extra for the service, but it will ensure additional care for your package. You can absorb special shipping costs into the item’s price, if necessary.

Order Custom Shipping Boxes With Bolt Boxes

Shipping fragile items requires extra attention and care. When deciding how to package and ship your fragile products, you’ll need to keep several things in mind. Consider the box size, shape, design, protective padding and labeling. You might even opt for special handling services for additional assurance. Taking these measures will help keep your items undamaged in transit.

You can customize the perfect boxes for your high-quality, fragile products with Bolt Boxes. At Bolt Boxes, we provide industry-leading custom box creation. Our durable boxes come in a wide range of materials and shapes for the best structural design. We also offer custom label printing to make your product boxes stand out. Build your custom boxes today and reach out to us with any questions.

order custom shipping boxes with Bolt Boxes