Tuesday, 19 November 2019

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Effects of Product Packaging on Consumer Behavior

Introduction

When you think of packaging the first thing that comes to mind is not presentation but rather protection of the product it is containing. Yes, that is its main purpose and does play a key factor in product packaging, but it can also lead to better sales for a company as well. Everyday consumers are exposed to more than 20,000 product choices within a 30-minute shopping session. They are bombarded with all these products and most of them on the same aisle are very similar.

Product packaging follows a specific list of rules that lead to success for a company. A package must protect and address a certain problem. The packaging of a product that is ecofriendly can also lead to better sales in the market we are in now. The goal of product packaging is to clearly state what a product is while being appealing to the customer.

The phrase, “Don’t Judge a Book by Its Cover,” does not apply to product packaging. Product packaging is meant to catch the eye of the consumer. It helps a consumer differentiate a product from one to the other. Most packages differ in terms of materials used in production, products stored inside and novelties in the design. However, all of them share one thing, its uniqueness.

Colors used in Product Packaging

Many corporations use different colors patterns, special materials, or specifically directed at fulfilling a need. For example, orange, yellow, purple have different meanings according to the consumer perception and culture. When a corporation understands what the customer wants and needs, they have full advantage of product packaging. Consumers are driven by influence and a product’s characteristics influences them to buy or to not buy the product.

For example, many kids brand cereals use bright colors to catch the eye of children who are attracted to these things. Also probably having some sort of colorful cartoon mascot that will give a child something to associate them with that cereal brand. However, more adult cereals will have a softer color pattern, white or pastel, that give an image of a more relaxed realistic feeling that adults would be more drawn too. Along with the color patterns more adult brands most likely will not have a colorful mascot but rather have healthy facts about the cereal that would be more attractive and fit the needs of its consumer.

Similar products will have similar designs and packaging color. A brand that is more about promoting a luxurious item, like Rolex, will often use black, silver, or gold to give a sense of higher class to their packaging materials. Brands that present a fiercer look will often combine bright colors with black, which also implies an appearance of power and intelligence. Countering the more intense feelings from those colors, many cleaning products use lighter soft colors that promote feelings of cleanliness and a calming sensation. They use whites and lavender that engage a consumer’s sense of smell, sight, and memories an item can bring.

In the table below, a group of people were surveyed on if color was an impact on consumer behavior and the results showed 79% of people agreed or highly agreed.

Strength of Package

Colors and images are great tools in product packaging that companies use to increase their revenue but that is not the only thing that attracts a consumer to products. Packaging at its purest form and purpose is to protect a product. Consumers notice this and they are more likely to spend a little extra money on a product that has strong packaging than one that has standard and not as presentable packaging. The stronger packaging promotes a product that is more reliable and longer lasting just like its packaging. Another example of good product packaging is putting proper warnings and instructions on the packaging. It gives a consumer a sense that the product is safe and gives them reassurance that a product works properly. Different languages on a product’s packaging can lead to a bigger audience for a product and lead to more profit for a company.

A strong form of packaging can save the loss of materials and money when it comes to food and liquid packaging. Not only can it save the product, but packaging can make a product last longer. Good packaging for foods means products can be resealed, which makes foods last longer and saves money.

The table below shows a group of people being surveyed on if packaging material contributes to consumer behavior. The results show 86% of people agree or strongly believe it does.

A strong packaging is not only important to the consumer but also important to companies using them. Poor packaging can lead to lost revenue for a company. In most scenarios that a packaging fails is when a product is being shipped to a store or a consumer. If the packaging fails to protect an item, it can damage and make the product useless and cost a company even more money. Product packaging quality is extremely important to a company being successful than most people realize.

How Packaging can save money

Packaging can be a very good tool for companies to save money on damages but also if you apply certain ideas on using less materials on your package it could save you money while providing good presentation and quality protection for products.

For example, a group of packaging engineers contacted a frozen pizza company to make improvements on the way they could save money on how they go about their packaging for their pizzas. They made some redesigns of the package by reducing the box's length and height by 1/16th of an inch and 3/8th of an inch, to the consumer that is hardly a recognizable change. Although it may be unrecognizable to a consumer, the pizza company noticed. These changes ultimately resulted in transportation cost savings of over $500,000 per year. The reason these engineers were able to make such a drastic success for this company was noticing that there was a significant amount of headspace or open air in the boxes that was unnecessary to protect the pizzas. By making these small changes it saved the company a fortune. Reducing the depth of the primary packaging, the company was able to increase the amount of space needed for space on a pallet which saved them $100,000 in transportation cost.

A company does not change the size of a package to save on materials but rather configure the box to be able to contain more products. For example, a health and beauty company saved $250,000 by changing the package to allow products to nest inside it better allowing fewer packaging materials to be used. The new case was smaller but held more product which led to a 50% increase in product density and led to better efficiency for the company.

Better corrugated boxes can also lead to companies saving money. Better corrugation leads to better strength for the boxes and leads to more interesting perks for a company. The strength in corrugated boxes makes a company more efficient by allowing more boxes to be stacked on pallets. These innovated ideas can lead to a company saving more space in their warehouse and saving on the cost of transportation over time. These ideas on saving on materials and space are great ideas unless they compromise the purpose of the packaging which is to protect the product. When there is a change in packaging to save money, a company must test a product with adequate testing to assure a customer that the products they are buying are safe to purchase.

Conclusion

In conclusion, consumers are very emotional and psychologically driven by a products appearance. Colors play a key factor on a consumer’s behaviors towards buying a product. Colors can give a consumer the feeling of being a part of higher income class just by presentation of colors demonstrating a more sophisticated look. Colors entice feelings and when a product’s packaging makes a consumer’s feelings come in to play that means a company successfully used product packaging.

Consumer behavior is also drawn in by the presentation of strength and durability of the packaged product. The strength and appearance of the product’s packaging give a sense of good quality that a consumer will notice. Consumers are more likely to spend more money on a product if it appears in better shape and protects the product even better.

If a company uses product packaging well, they can save money and be more efficient while doing it. There are many different methods a company can use to save money. Like using less materials for packaging or putting more materials in a package. Either way, better corrugated boxes lead to less damage and more revenue for a company.

A product’s overall packaging is a great tool for being persuasive to a consumer. If used right, it can make a company a lot more money. Companies always keep in mind that the main purpose of product packaging is to protect a product and to use unique and durable packaging designs and methods to persuade consumer behavior.

References

Wyrzykowski, Kajetan. “How Packaging Influences Consumer Behavior? Packhelp Blog.” Packhelp, 27 Aug. 2019, packhelp.com/how-packaging-influences-consumer-behavior/.

Lane, Terry. “How Does Packaging Affect Consumers?” Small Business - Chron.com, Chron.com, 21 Nov. 2017, smallbusiness.chron.com/packaging-affect-consumers-70612.html.

“How Packaging Influences Consumer Behavior.” JohnsByrne, 12 May 2017, www.johnsbyrne.com/blog/packaging-influences-consumer-behavior/.

Wang, Peggy. “31 Mind-Blowing Examples of Brilliant Packaging Design.” BuzzFeed, BuzzFeed, 27 Jan. 2019, www.buzzfeed.com/peggy/brilliant-packaging-designs-that-will-blow-your-mind.

Bynum, John. “Five Ways Product Packaging Impacts Sales.” MediaFast, www.mediafast.com/five-ways-product-packaging-impacts-sales/.

“Six Small Packaging Changes That Can Save Big Money.” DC Velocity, www.dcvelocity.com/articles/20160309-six-small-packaging-changes-that-can-save-big-money/.

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