The Real ROI for Packaging Design

How much is well-designed product packaging worth to your brand? While some consumer goods retailers view packaging as just another cost to be minimized, they’re overlooking its potential to help boost product sales and inspire customer loyalty.

“It’s time to stop seeing package design as an expense, but rather as an important brand investment,” advises the author of an article for Packaging Digest.

We couldn’t agree more.

Read on to learn about the return on investment (ROI) you can get from your product packaging.

 

 

A Worthwhile Investment

Known as “the silent salesperson,” product packaging has value far greater than its usefulness as a container for merchandise. “If properly designed, packaging can make a huge difference in category dominance and sales growth, creating significant brand value,” according to Packaging Digest. The key is to design packaging to appeal to consumers on an emotional level rather than for increased functionality, convenience, or reusability.

Emotions have a powerful impact on consumer behavior. Design elements like color, fonts, and imagery can be used to evoke positive emotions and memories in consumers’ minds and create positive associations with your brand.

Design drives consumer desire for a product, and subsequently, profitability. Andrew Gibbs explains the power of packaging design best in his book, Box Bottle Bag: The World’s Best Packaging Design from TheDieline.com: “Well-designed packaging has the power to turn a want into a need, and into a purchase. … It has the power to directly trigger the emotions of the consumer, and it is what makes someone fall in love with a product, or even hate it. It’s that emotional connection that makes a design a success.”

 

 

 

Your Packaging IS Your Product

Packaging is much more than a mere vessel to carry your product to the consumer. Consider the theory of sensation transference developed by Louis Cheskin, a researcher who studied the effects of design on consumer behavior in the 1940s. The main premise of the sensation transference theory is that consumers view a product’s packaging as part of the product itself. “Few of us make a distinction on an unconscious level between the product and it’s packaging,” writes Liam Curley in an article for Business 2 Community. “The packaging forms part of the product and in fact becomes the product, meaning the customer judges the qualities of that product based on their preference and opinion of the packaging, and make their purchase decision accordingly.” In other words, consumers’ feelings about a product’s packaging are transferred to the product itself.

Following this theory, it makes sense to put as much thought and care into your packaging design as you do for the product it houses.

 

 

 

Measuring Your Potential ROI

So, what kind of ROI are companies getting for their packaging designs?

It’s hard, if not impossible, to put a monetary value on customer loyalty to a brand or product, but a blog post for Nielsen by marketing and consumer packaged goods expert Randall Beard names packaging as a small investment that offers a big return. “The great thing about packaging is that it’s ‘always on.’ Once the investment has been made, it’s all dividends for years. Indeed, once a brand design or logo ‘takes,’ its value often increases with age,” Beard writes. “Think of that 12-oz red can, or those golden arches. This means that the ROI is typically much, much higher than almost any episodic marketing activity.”

As numerous marketplace examples and research show, better packaging can lead directly to increased product sales. In fact, case studies conducted by Nielsen show that optimized package redesigns generate an average 5.5 percent increase in forecasted sales revenues over existing designs.

With results like that, it’s clear that well-designed product packaging is a worthwhile investment for retailers.

Do you want to get more bang for your buck from your product packaging? Contact PSI today for your free packaging analysis.

 

About Jessi Knipe-Semler

Jessi Knipe-SemlerJessi is the Design & Marketing Manager for PSI Group. As a multidisciplinary design and marketing generalist, she works with customers to enhance their packaging brand and create unique user experiences.

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