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At a time when more and more people are buying online, customer experience begins with your packaging.

We all know how important first impressions are. The better experience your customers have opening their package, the more likely they are to choose your brand again and, most importantly, recommend it to others.

  • Is your packaging easy to open?
  • Is it visually appealing?
  • Can it be used for returns?
  • How are your products presented inside a box?

The above list covers just a few questions you may want to consider to ensure your packaging delivers a memorable unboxing experience for your customers.

Here’s how other online retailers do it.

FEELUNIQUE

FEELUNIQUE boxes are equipped with a tear strip system that makes them easy to open and significantly improves their appearance. (The self-adhesive strip eliminates the need for tape, allowing customers to easily open the box by peeling it away).

The company also adds their logo and short messages such as “Almost there”, “Thank you” and “Enjoy” inside their packaging to help build rapport with customers and improve their overall experience with the brand.

Lakeland

Lakeland uses boxes with a peel and seal closure that are easy to open and stronger than standard cardboard boxes. A tear strip system is a great tamper-evident mechanism that gives customers the peace of mind that no one interferes with their items before they arrive.

Thanks to packaging automation, Lakeland parcels are compact, aesthetically-pleasing and only use as much packaging material as necessary, limiting waste.

We have recently launched our annual “unboxing” survey to learn more about the experiences of UK customers. Our aim is to help retailers ensure their packaging is easy to open, easy to return and kind to the environment.

The survey can be accessed here: https://www.macfarlanepackaging.com/open-up-about-unboxing-2019/

If you would like find out how Macfarlane Packaging can help you deliver a memorable unboxing experience for your customers, contact us today

The post Delivering a memorable unboxing experience for your customers appeared first on Macfarlane Packaging.

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For every car, aeroplane, electronic system or piece of machinery made this year, a complete portfolio of replacement parts are also manufactured to ensure availability for maintenance throughout the life-cycle of the product – up to 15 years or longer.

If you think about the volume of products involved within that chain, the numbers become mind-boggling.

A major headache for the manufacturers and distributors engaged in that supply chain is how to ensure that the parts are in pristine condition when they are needed – often years down the line. These parts are typically highly corrosive and susceptible to damage.

Storage of corrosive parts can be process heavy. There will be lots of steps to ensure that these high value components will be fit to use when they are called upon to kick into action.

Many of the parts undergo conservation before packing and being placed into a controlled warehouse environment for a long period of time. The components undergo regular inventory checks for quality purposes and, typically, are refurbished and repacked before distribution to the end user.

Some parts are dipped in oil throughout storage – these then need to be cleaned off before repacking.

All of these steps and processes require intensive labour and incur high costs, they add to the production cycle and can be a drain on resources.

If your business is engaged in the manufacturing and/or storage of corrosive products, there is an opportunity to significantly reduce costs – increasing your competitive edge and delivering operational efficiency.

INTERCEPT TechnologyTM provides corrosion protection even under extreme conditions (-35C up to +80C), guaranteeing the lifespan of your products for up to 15 years during transportation and storage, without the need to maintain, refurbish or repack.

It’s oil-free and available in a range of packaging applications. It’s environmentally friendly and conforms to RDHS, TRGS 615 and TRGS 900 regulations, and is recyclable and easily disposable.

INTERCEPT TechnologyTM is cost effective as it delivers high process optimization, removing unnecessary procedures and reducing packaging materials. Significant savings can be achieved.

If you would like to find out more about INTERCEPT Technology™ contact us today to see how we can revolutionise your storage of corrosive products.

The post How to reduce costs when storing corrosive products appeared first on Macfarlane Packaging.

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At a time when many similar products are available on the market, your packaging is just as important as the items you sell.

Not only does it protect your products from damage, but it can also demonstrate to your customers how you are different from your competition.

Here are four key reasons why you should consider using customised packaging.

1. Enhance product protection during transit
Each product is different and has its own transportation needs depending on its size, fragility and shape.

Packaging designed particularly for your items ensures the right fit and level of protection. It will also cut unnecessary costs for your business by reducing excess packaging and storage costs.

2. Increase sales
Surrounded by similar products with comparable prices, customers are likely to choose those that they find most attractive.

Packaging that stands out from the crowd will get your products noticed and may influence purchasing decisions and increase sales.

3. Improve customers experience
Items that arrive in aesthetically-pleasing packages will improve the overall shopping experience for your customers.

You can include personalised message on the inside of the pack, which will help build rapport with clients and promote a positive image of your company.

4. Use it as a marketing tool
Customers often associate brands with the quality of products and past buying experience. Use the space on your packs to promote your business and build your brand.

At Macfarlane Packaging, we can offer bespoke packaging solutions that are tailored to your requirements and needs, from custom printed tape to made-to-measure boxes.

Visit our website or contact us for more information.

The post Why should you use customised packaging? appeared first on Macfarlane Packaging.

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With the growing shortage of space and increasing customer demands, storage is becoming a real challenge.

A survey by the UK Warehousing Association (UKWA) has revealed that about 75% of UK warehouse owners were unable to offer storage space to customers due to lack of capacity. Storage is also becoming more expensive with prices rising by about 25% due to the shortage and increase in Brexit-related enquiries.

If you are looking for ways to maximise your storage space while reducing costs, here are five ways to help you make the most of your warehouse floor.

1. Reduce the size and weight of your packages
Ensuring your packaging is good fit for your products will help you free up valuable storage space and reduce your transport costs.

Optimised packaging will reduce the space each parcel takes up in both your warehouse and delivery vehicles, and you will also save on packaging supplies as less in-fill material is required.

Packaging solutions such as crash-lock boxes come flat packed and are easy to assembly. They take less space than standard cardboard boxes and will help you pack quicker while increasing your throughput.

2. Use pallet boxes
Pallet boxes are delivered flat packed and can be easily collapsed for storage after use. They are ideal for transporting heavy items and can be stacked high, ensuring you make the most of your pallet space.

3. Consider loose fill alternatives
Packing chips are cheap and quick to pack, however, they are also bulky and difficult to store.

Packaging solutions such as Geami will not only help you reduce your storage requirements, but are also ideal for protecting fragile and breakable items in transit. Would you be surprised to hear that one pallet of Geami can replace 12 rolls of bubble wrap?

4. Switch to a different production method
Just in Time (JIT) production, where products and packaging are produced to order, and drip-feed supply, where products and packaging are supplied as and when you need them, are also great ways to free up your warehouse space.

Lower stock holding means you will reduce your renting and insurance costs and also benefit from an improved cash flow as you no longer need to bulk buy slow running stock.

5. Store your products with someone else
Have you ever considered out-sourcing the storage of your products and packaging? At Macfarlane Packaging, we can warehouse your packaging and deliver your items exactly when you need them.

Contact us today to find out more about our warehousing service or to discover packaging solutions that can help you maximise your storage space without compromising product protection.

The post Five ways to make the most of your storage space appeared first on Macfarlane Packaging.

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Internet sales now account for nearly 19% of the total retail sales in the UK, with statistics showing a steady growth from year to year.

That’s a lot of parcels going up and down the country, taking up van space, sitting on doorstops waiting for their owners to get home from work.

Have you ever ordered an item online that arrived in a box far too big for the product? How many attempts of delivery did it take to get to you when, if packed smaller, it potentially could have gone through the letterbox.

I’m sure we’ve all had a scratchy head moment of collecting a huge parcel from the post office and wondering what it could be…

Nearly 1 in 3 respondents in our unboxing study last year said the packaging of their deliveries was not a good fit for the product. Have you ever wondered what implications this might have for your business?

Firstly for consideration there is the knock on effect onto transport costs. It looks like there could certainly be room for increased transport yield and reduced vehicle and fuel costs.

Then, there are material costs – using a smaller box will cost you less, but you should always ensure that it is fit for purpose. Too much skimping and you could be faced with the costs of replacing damaged products.

And what about the environmental impact? Using a box that is too big means too much room is taken up in transportation, potentially adding more vehicles to the road.

Finally, there is the customer experience – not only is it inconvenient to miss deliveries due to the parcel size but, as a consumer, it can be incredibly frustrating to look into a large box and find a very small item inside…

Ensure your postal rate, packaging cost, environmental and customer experience targets are all met by conducting a simple review of your box sizing.

Contact Macfarlane Packaging today to see how we can help.

The post What opportunities do you have to reduce your box costs? appeared first on Macfarlane Packaging.

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Product damage is one of the main challenges for internet retailers.

It is not only expensive, as you need to replace broken items, but it may also have a negative impact on the way customers perceive your brand. And impaired reputation can be difficult to fix.

Using the correct packaging can help to protect your products and your brand, saving you time and money that can be spent more effectively elsewhere.

Here are a few considerations to help you avoid costly returns.

Is your packaging fit for purpose?
Is the packaging you use suitable for its job? Where will your products travel to, and how will they be handled and stored? Will they be shipped in different temperature conditions?

These are just a few questions you should be asking yourself when choosing the right packaging for your goods.

Some packaging tape, for example, can perform differently in colder temperatures, losing its adhesion and leaving your parcel vulnerable to damage and pilfering.

Do you use the right amount of packaging?
Using too much can inflate your packaging costs and alienate customers. Too little packaging reduces product protection in transit and storage. One way to tackle this problem is to evaluate your box range to better cater for the needs of individual products.

There are a number of loose fill alternatives on the market. If you are going for a neater and enhanced unboxing experience perhaps look at paper cushioning solutions such as Geami. It will help you to reduce the amount of void fill that you need to protect your goods, is easily recyclable and simply looks great.

Are you aware of packaging innovations?
Don’t just select packaging because that is how it’s always been done. There are a wealth of products available on the market that can deliver improvements to your bottom line.

Packaging solutions with an in-built void fill, such as Korrvu retention and suspension boxes, firmly secures products inside the box, offering optimum product protection.

Inflatable packaging systems such as Airsac will help to ensure that fragile products reach their destination intact. Airsac has been tested at temperatures from -40 to +60 degrees and is suitable for both air freight and standard courier services.

If you find the selection of packaging available overwhelming, seek advice from a packaging professional who will be able to review your product line and suggest the best options to ensure your goods are delivered without damage.

At Macfarlane Packaging, we can help you find the optimum packaging for your products. Contact us today to arrange a free, no obligation packaging review.

The post How to prevent costly returns appeared first on Macfarlane Packaging.

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If you are an internet retailer, you will know that the speed and efficiency of your packaging operation are crucial for getting products to your customers quickly and efficiently.

With the growth of ecommerce, customers’ expectations are increasing too. They expect parcels to arrive undamaged and want hassle-free exchanges and returns.

Meeting the demands of today’s online customers can be difficult. A faster packaging operation increases productivity and can help you deliver the level of service that your customers require.

Below are a few packaging solutions that could optimise your packaging operation.

All-in-one pack designs

Alternative pack designs available on the market, including the innovative Korrvu packaging range can help you to create more output in less time while ensuring superior product protection throughout the entire supply chain.

Korrvu packaging uses a highly-resilient film to firmly hold products inside the box, eliminating the need for additional void filling or wrapping. As the boxes are self-sealing, this also reduces the time-consuming effort of taping the box. As a result, orders are assembled faster and less packing material is required.

Packaging Automation

Have you ever considered switching to an automated packing process?

While some may be concerned about the initial costs associated with equipment and installations, automation comes in many forms from manual tape dispensers to fully automated bagging machinery. Whatever the level of automation, making changes will help to deliver cost savings for your business and ensure that your products reach customers quickly and efficiently.

Branding on the Inside

To ensure your customers get the ‘WOW’ factor when they open your products, you could consider branding on the inside. It is important to convey the same impression of your brand to the customer at every touchpoint, whether they buy in-store or online.

By printing your brand on the inside you are reducing the risks of the parcel being pilfered but are still able to demonstrate your brand values inside the box, delivering an optimum customer experience.

To speak to one of our packaging experts about your packaging requirements, get in touch today.

The post Optimising your packaging operation to meet the growing expectations of online customers appeared first on Macfarlane Packaging.

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Every company likes to advertise, it’s how they communicate their products, values and services.

It’s where we, as customers, get the urge to consume, spend, buy, want and need. Our pupils dilate as we imagine ourselves coveting the latest must have item.

Advertising is an important thing. If it’s done right it can build brands, enforce lifestyles and start trends… But what if your budget won’t stretch to a TV advert, a full page spread in a newspaper or a poster campaign that glows at every bus shelter in Britain? It’s expense stuff and can be daunting for a small and medium enterprise or start-up company.

At Macfarlane, we talk a lot about branded boxes, printing on outer packaging that conveys your business ethos or brand but, what if this isn’t an option for your business either? Never fear, we have another idea for you… printed tape!

Yep, this often overlooked gem of an item offers multiple benefits:

  • It can be printed in any design with any message – you could put your office contact on there, a logo, a message directly to your customers, an overview of your product range, the story of your brand, a happy face…it has endless possibilities.
  • If you are selling a consumable item that sits in stock with your customer and is being picked from their racking in the original shipping box the chances are they are going to place a reorder with you – the box they are picking from has your contact details on the tape. Genius!
  • It helps to deter pilfering from your parcels – it can’t be easily patched with replacement tape, it shows too easily.
  • It stands out from the norm, it makes people look. So whether it’s out with a courier, going through the postal system or sitting on a shelf somewhere, potential customers are noticing your business.
  • It’s cheap and has a low minimum order quantity. You can order as few as 72 rolls to get you started.
  • It’s a great way to start getting creative with your packaging.

Why not contact Macfarlane Packaging today and find out how we can help get your business noticed.

The post A low cost idea to brand your shipments appeared first on Macfarlane Packaging.

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Managing your entire packaging process can be tricky, especially if you are getting your stock from different suppliers.

Your products might be coming on various vehicles, you might need to raise multiple purchase orders and may even find it difficult to keep track of your packaging spend.

Switching to a single supplier can help address all these issues, especially if they offer online order management services.

Etrading platforms, such as Macfarlane’s Simplicit.e, can help transform the speed and efficiency of your packaging operation and generate savings in various areas of your business.

Not only will you be able to reduce administration costs and the amount of paperwork, helping minimise waste and ensuring your office runs smoothly. You will also have a 24/7 access to all packaging products and your order history, making reordering faster, simpler and more accurate.

Other benefits of Simplicit.e include:

  • The platform can be accessed from any device (mobile, laptop, tablet) and can be integrated with your in-house ordering systems.
  • Customers can place orders via website, a mobile app or Punchout. Orders can also be sent via email or file transfer such as DropBox to give customers more choice and make the ordering process as easy and convent for them as possible.
  • The system can send out automated dispatch and order tracking notifications and forward invoices directly to customer’s finance department.
  • It provides access to packaging waste reports, allowing customers to control their packaging usage while keep all the necessary information in one place.

To find out more about how Simplicit.e can help simplify your packaging management, contact Macfarlane Packaging today.

The post Transforming your packaging operation with etrading systems appeared first on Macfarlane Packaging.

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One of the most fundamental functions of packaging is to protect your items during transit and storage.

Items that arrive damaged, or do not reach their destination at all, may discourage customers from purchasing your products in the future; not to mention costs associated with handling returns.

Below is an overview of transit boxes to help you choose the right level of protection for your products. Remember to always check the recommended load for the box to ensure it’s suitable to safely hold the weight of your goods.

Single Wall Boxes
Single wall boxes are great for packing and storing lighter objects. If you are shipping heavier loads, you may want to consider a double wall box which offers a better protection against punctures from sharp objects in transit.

However, thanks to the latest developments in corrugate board, some single wall boxes can offer similar protection to double wall boards, which provides an excellent opportunity to reduce the size and weight of your parcels. A packaging expert will be able to advise you on the best solution for your products.

Double Wall Boxes
These heavy-duty boxes contain two layers of fluting to provide better protection for your products. With a range of sizes available, they are ideal for handling and shipping heavy or bulky objects.

Always check the approximate load guide to ensure that the box will be strong enough for the weight of your product to withstand shipping.

Postal Tubes
If you are struggling to find a suitable box for irregular items such as umbrellas or golf clubs, postal tubes may come in handy. They are designed to fit tightly in order to secure the contents in transit and are available in different sizes to suit various applications.

If you’re concerned about the cylindrical shape of the tube rolling in storage or transit, there are similar options available that address this issue like postal cubes. Their square design accommodates irregular items and enables product stacking in storage or for palletisation.

Export Boxes
Strong and durable, export boxes are great for transporting and storing heavy items. They are specially manufactured to fit onto pallets without crushing or damaging your products, and each box has a clearly displayed IATA (International Air Transport Association) reference.

BDCM Boxes
Bulk Distribution Carton Metric Boxes are strong, quality containers commonly used in the retail, clothing and catalogue trade. Available in different sizes, they can be supplied with printed trade shipping details if requested by retailers.

Bottle Boxes
Bottle boxes are ideal for sending wine, beer and champagne bottles in the post or via courier, with a protective insert they ensure protection in transit and storage. These boxes fit standard 70cl and 75cl sizes, and can accommodate one, two, three, six, nine or twelve bottles to meet various requirements.

Suspension and Retention Boxes
Suspension and Retention Boxes, like Sealed Air’s Korrvu®, are an ideal packaging solution for electronics and other fragile products. They contain a strong film liner that holds your products in place during transportation and storage, eliminating the need for additional void film or packing.

If unsure of the right box for your products, Macfarlane Packaging is here to help.

Get in touch today to arrange a free packaging review.

The post What type of box do I need to protect my goods? appeared first on Macfarlane Packaging.

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