In the past five months, the landscape of retail grocery packaging has totally changed. Previously, a good package design only needed to be attractive enough to the consumer walking the grocery aisles. Its goal was to identify the brand and the product, plus quickly catch the consumer’s eye among the thousands of other products in-store. Now, with the significant increase of online ordering for delivery or pick-up, packaging must not only be attractive in-store, but also satisfy the needs of the online experience, including:
- Look attractive in a two-dimensional world.
- Allow the consumer to mimic the act of picking up – getting the “look & feel” – of a package without actually doing so.
- Maintain the product’s brand image and integrity.
- Provide needed e-commerce security.
A recent survey revealed that since COVID-19 started, 50% of in-store shoppers have also bought products online for curbside pick-up and delivery. Also, several studies have shown that as many as 35% of shoppers plan to continue their online purchase behavior beyond the end of the pandemic. What this means is there is a significant amount of business for the progressive manufacturer who can present their product as a standout in the online shopping environment.
Hey, Where’s My Ketchup?
One of the paradoxes of today’s grocery shopping experience is there is not as much opportunity for impulse purchases. Thus, many customers won’t be exposed to new products and will stick with familiar brands. What is happening, however, is that if a preferred brand is not in-stock, a customer is offered alternatives. This provides an opportunity to present new brands to new buyers. Also, consumers may be looking for a specific product type, but not know a brand in the category. If they are shopping a product for the first time online, the impression they have when on the store’s website will be their first impression. THAT’S THE TIME TO MAKE (OR LOSE) YOUR SALE!
Interestingly, on many retailers’ websites, there is plenty of room to list details about the features of your brand. This is not something that can be done in-store. Chalk up an advantage for online shopping!
What should a manufacturer aim for when having their label designed for the online world? A few things:
- Remember, this is the ad for your product. You know the value of a good photo shoot. Go for the same high quality with your label.
- Use BOLD colors to stand out.
- Choose an easy-to-read font.
- Ensure the brand name is crystal clear.
- Clearly tell the consumer the product type. No need to be cute, just show the product name.
Protect Your Baby
When a product is bought in-store, it is handled about five times, from finished product on the manufacturing line to when the consumer has it in their cart. When a product is bought online for either pick-up or delivery, it can be handled up to 20 times! In many cases, the final delivery is made by air, truck and/or car and this can lead to breakage or spillage. Therefore, the physical package must be designed and have the integrity to withstand the road to the consumer.
Amazon has required all product manufacturers to utilize containers designed to handle the rigors of their picking, packing and delivery. Walmart puts all household products in a sealed plastic bag to protect against potential liquid leakage in the final miles of shipping or delivery.
If you have a glass container for a food product, consider changing to plastic to protect against breakage throughout the process. We all know the problems with shipping glass samples. The problems are magnified in the delivery of products directly to the consumer.
Now is a great time to look toward the future and consider your product’s consumer impressions both in-store and online. Through the right package design, you can increase your consumer takeaway in both environments. There are smart adjustments you can make now to protect the integrity of your product, regardless of the purchase method, to ensure its safe journey into the consumer’s hands.
Finally, to discuss overstock or problem products you want to sell or quickly move some inventory to generate dollars, contact Dick Lansing at The Lansing Group: