15 Packaging Design and Print Tips

by | 20 Nov, 2017

When putting together a plan for your packaging design, there’s more to it than meets the eye. It needs to be an extension of your product.

You have two seconds to make an impact on potential customers so you need every tool under your belt to help them make a purchasing decision.

Packaging design may seem daunting at first but we’ve put together 15 of our favourite tips for getting the job done right first time around.

1. Know Your Customer

The first place to start is by thinking about who is actually going to buy your product. You should have a good idea of this from your initial market research.

Every business will (or should) have a buyer persona in mind so solidifying this before deciding on packaging design will help make the decisions throughout a lot easier.

Image: Sassafra


2. Start With The End In Mind

Before you even begin the design process, you need to speak to your printers.

Why? Because they’ll be able to tell you what’s practical, what’s affordable within your budget and be able to guide you on the best finish for your packaging.

There’s no point spending money on a designer, only for them to create something that is completely impractical to actually make.

Speaking to your printers beforehand will allow you to get the best value and finish on your final packaging product.

Image: The Wulong Wulong Tea


3. Consider Different Types of Design

Make sure not to limit yourself to just one idea. After all, this is a representation of your business and brand so you want to spend the time on making the right decision now.

Play around with different types of packaging design and see what happens. Don’t assume that just because you like it, that it will be appealing to your customers.

Test it out on friends and family. You may just be surprised with what you end up with.

Image: CultCat


4. Consider The Price of Your Product

This point is practical and ensures you’re attracting the ideal customer to your product. The price of your product should influence your packaging design.

There’s no point over designing for a low cost product. Alternatively, you don’t want to undersell a premium product with cheap packaging.

Image: Aromi


5. Make It An Extension of Your Brand

Your packaging is another method of marketing your business. It tells everyone who interacts with it just who you are and what your brand represents.

It’s really important to make sure that your packaging is in line with your brand guidelines. Make sure to use the same colour scheme, font and most importantly, logo.

Image: Henleys


6. Research The Competition

Make sure you consider who you’ll be competing next to on the shelf. Visit shops that you plan on selling your product in and look at the competitions packaging.

Do they use bold colours and patterns? Is their box large whilst yours is small?

Knowing what their packaging looks like enables you to rise above the competition.

Image: Novelty


7. Range of Products

Is your product already a part of a family of products or will it be in the future? Your brand should be consistent across the whole range.

Having a recurring theme will help your products stand out on the shelves and more attention equals more sales.

Image: Raincoast Candles & Home Fragrance


8.Think Inside The Box

Don’t stop your packaging design at just the box. Be creative and think about how the style can extend into the actual product.

Consider creating a uniform design on any internal wrapping, sub-containers and labels. This is all about deciding how your product will be presented to your customer when they open it.

Image: Aphrodite Handmade Jewelry


9. Keep It Short and Sweet

When it comes to the copy on the packaging, it’s beneficial to get across your point in as much of a concise way as possible. Say more with less.

A picture is worth a thousand words as they say so opt for photos or illustrations to show the benefits, demonstrate how to use it or to describe your product.

Image: Haberdashery Anonymous


10. Don’t Forget Instructions

It’s something that is usually overlooked by business owners as they know their product inside out. However, that knowledge has come from repetitive use and interaction.

You want to share with the customer the best way of using the product in their hands. In some cases, you may need to share instructions for safety purposes.

Keep it simple on the exterior. Go into detail in the internal.

Image: Savon Purifant


11. Check The Law

Depending on the type of product, there are certain things that need to be displayed by law. Make sure you check on this before you start designing. You don’t want to be caught out by surprise.

If you don’t consider the legal requirements at the beginning, it could end up being a costly mistake with fines, reprints or even lawsuits.

Image: Rishi Tea


12. Protect The Product

Your product is not only meant to be creative. It’s meant to serve a practical purpose as well. Your packaging should not only look good but it should protect the product inside.

Customers are going to be unhappy if they buy your product, only to find it’s been damaged. Consider how much trauma your product goes through with normal handling and transportation.

Make sure that when you’re designing your packaging, that it’s strong and sturdy. Or get ready to start issuing refunds.

Image: Roots & Wings


13. Don’t Be Too Trendy

I’m sure you have plans for your product to be around for years to come. However, fashion and trends disappear in the blink of an eye.

Consider a more classic design that won’t need changing in a year’s time.

Image: Ethical Is Beautiful


14. Give a Window Into Your Product

Giving a sneak peek of your product is a great selling tactic – especially if you have a visually appealing product.

This is a fantastic tool for food products in particular where you can display your product safely but still create some desire for the product inside.

Image: Healthy Generation


15. Make It Stand Out

Your product is going to be directly competing with other similar products, right next to each other on the shelf. This is no time to be timid.

Make your packaging stand out with colour, graphics or creative design. Remember, you have a limited time to make an impression of the browsing eyes of your customers.

Make it count.

Image: Gilliam


Whatever your packaging aspirations, talk to the experienced and friendly team at Short Run Packaging. Each and every member of our team has a combination of many years experience and expertise.

Get in touch to see how we can help with packaging design, printing, finishing and delivery of your products.