Blog > Package Design > Maximizing the Effectiveness of Your Packaging Design

Creating Effective Package Design

February 28, 2023
min read
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When was the last time you noticed a product’s packaging design?

In the age of Amazon, impulse buys, and increasingly saturated markets, your package design is more important than ever. It helps make your brand memorable and is the first tangible impression of your brand that consumers get.

Some consumers will buy a product simply because of its packaging design.

This is why your choice in this area is just as important as the product itself. You could have a great product, but without great package design, it might get left on the shelf and never make it to the checkout line.

In this blog, we’re going to help you maximize the effectiveness of your packaging design with a few, easy to follow tips and tricks. Let us help you become the next viral TikTok product that gets sold out in seconds.

One question before we dive in…

Do you (truly) know your target audience?

No matter what part of the business you are in, your target audience should be at the core of your decision-making process, especially when it comes to your branding design.

With packaging design, this is even more important. A GenZ target audience is not going to respond the way you want with packaging that was designed with a Baby Boomer in mind. Your target audience helps you create designs that resonate in exactly the way you would want them to.

You can use insights about their behavior, wants, needs, and preferences to help guide your design decisions. This ensures that you are creating something that serves them in a functional way and aligns with their lifestyles. 

For example, you are a sustainable baby diaper company. Your target audience is young, new parents. Therefore, the type of package your audience will respond best should be easy to open, transport, and store. Because they are new parents, including helpful things like tips and tricks on the back label would likely make a good lasting impression.

This also helps to create customer loyalty because you are helping to address their pain points and needs by actually delivering on the promises you make in your ads and social campaigns. 

Remember, your high-quality packaging alone could serve as its own unique selling point if it’s targeted in the right way.

Consistency is key.

Five smoothie bottles with labels that differ by flavor and color. They all have different colored beanies on their top.

Unless it’s a limited-edition product, your customer’s unboxing experience should remain true to your brand identity. Your brand identity is how you communicate your company’s values to the world, and nowhere should this be more potent than in your packaging design choices.

Consistent branding helps create a sense of trust and familiarity with your target audience, making them more likely to choose you over your competitors. Your packaging design is the first physical touchpoint that your customer has with your brand, so think of it as a concentrated version of your entire visual identity.

Make sure that your packaging design aligns with your color scheme, typography, and your social media presence. Ask yourself what your brand would feel like, look like, smell like, if it fit in the palm of your hand. Is it metallic and futuristic, or the stuff of cottage core dreams?

Minimalism or maximalism?

We are all big fans of cool and complex graphic designs, but when it comes to your packaging design, simplicity is key. 

Simple doesn’t mean that you can’t play with creative shapes and bold colors, it just means that when your customer rips open that cardboard box and holds your package in their hands for the first time, that it’s easy to read and makes a statement, without hurting their eyes.

Remember how we told you to imagine what your brand would look like if you concentrated your visual identity in the palm of your hand? Now strip that back a little bit by focusing on the essential elements of what makes you, you.

What information does your customer need to know? What design elements are essential to your brand identity? Is there something you would like for them to focus on right away? How can you make your packaging impactful enough that they want to keep it and share it all over social media instead of tossing it in the recycling bin?

So, minimalism or maximalism? Our vote is on minimalism, but cool minimalism.

More than just a pretty face.

A package designed to look like a puppy. Its lid is open and reads, "Here's to you and your new friend!"

Good package design can do a whole lot more than you think, and consumers absolutely love functional packaging. It’s not just about a pretty face, it can also serve a functional purpose that will make your customer’s experience with your brand even better.

Think of it this way, how many boxes do you see leaning against the bins on trash day? Our bets are on a whole lot. Instead of letting your packaging end up in a landfill, design it so that it helps your customers store their product, protect the product inside, or educates your consumer.

For example, a silk scrunchie company could design packaging that also serves as a nightstand scrunchie holder. Or a perfume company could package their bottles in perfectly sized and accessible boxes that are designed to keep the perfume fresh for longer. 

A running shoe company could design a box that fits perfectly in a gym bag and reduces shoe odors.

See where we’re going with this? 

Sustainability matters.

There’s no denying that there’s a magnifying glass on sustainability, and it really is the future. As younger generations come of age, they will be paying more attention to avoiding waste where they can, in any way they can. This means that they are starting to look for more eco-friendly options that align with their values.

Packaging waste has a significant impact on the environment, contributing to landfills, pollution, and deforestation. This is why looking at more sustainable packaging can really help improve your brand image and reputation. Here are a couple of ways to make your packaging design more sustainable.

Choose sustainable materials: Think, biodegradable or compostable plastics, recycled paper or cardboard, and even natural fibres like hemp and bamboo.

Keep your design simple: We already covered this in a previous section but consider keeping your packaging size on the smaller side and eliminating unnecessary packing materials. You can still make a visual impact without the giant packaging and bells and whistles.

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Have fun with it.

Packaging design is a critical consideration for any brand looking to stand out from the competition and connect with customers. 

By understanding your target audience, focusing on brand identity, keeping it simple, considering functional requirements, and embracing sustainability, you can create packaging designs that not only look great but also serve a functional purpose and align with your brand values.

So don't be afraid to get creative and think outside the box (or packaging, in this case!) - your packaging can be a powerful tool for connecting with customers and creating a memorable brand experience. Whether it's a fun design that makes customers smile or eco-friendly packaging that helps reduce waste, small details can make a big impact.

So go forth and create packaging that's not just pretty, but effective too!

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About the author:
Kat Calejo
Senior content writer- Designity
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