After all the care you take selecting the items in your subscription box, make sure that the box makes the best impression when it arrives by making strategic, creative choices in your packaging. Your packaging choices already play a crucial role in protecting contents during shipping in the most efficient and cost-conscious way. Beyond that, packaging can play an important role in promoting your brand, increasing customer engagement and reducing churn.
Here we look at some great examples of packaging that can serve as an inspiration for your own subscription box fulfillment strategy.
Brand It Using Color
Tiffany & Co. are so closely identified with their distinctive blue boxes that the color is now known as “Tiffany blue.” The deep red Netflix used for its envelopes when it began sending DVDs through the mail remains in use to brand its trailers for streaming programming. In a similar way, color can set your packaging apart and make your brand identifiable at a glance.
Ipsy uses a single bright color to make its packaging stand out. This shade of pink conveys a sense of boldness and style, appropriate for its of-the-moment beauty product selections.
The pale blue used by Coastal Co. creates a very different mood than Ispy’s pink. This shade works for the brand by evoking a breezy beach atmosphere, harmonizing with the theme of the lifestyle products inside.
If you are familiar with color theory, you may recall that shades at opposite sides of the color wheel complement and strengthen each other. In this box from Jackie’s Chocolate, the purple and yellow side-by-side looks polished and vibrant.
Even with different color choices, Koyah Organics keeps to a consistently harmonious pastel palette. Their three-tone design is immediately recognizable from month to month.
Simplicity vs. Complexity
Whether you want to opt for a complex design that carries over to every part of your interior and exterior packaging or a strategically-designed clean look, there are creative options for making your packaging design support the theme of your subscription box service.
One of the designs used by CAUSEBOX illustrates their themes of diversity and socially-conscious brands. The illustrations carry through to the interior of the box, which also includes a full-length booklet describing the products in depth. The fact that the design changes to reflect each month’s new theme adds to the effort the company puts in to help their subscribers feel engaged with the products.
The bare look of For the Makers’ packaging can be deceiving. It’s plain, almost unfinished look suggested the open possibilities of a blank canvas or an art supply store, inviting subscribers to take part in completing an artistic project.
One very direct way to convey the contents of your box is to illustrate it with a picture on the outside.
HelloFresh uses a big, colorful lime to stand for the fresh, nutritious ingredients contained inside the box.
Bitsbox, which sends monthly coding projects to kids, uses a playful tech theme in its packaging that signals that their target audience is children looking for fun interactions with technology.
Different Every Month
As seen in earlier examples, your brand can still be easily identifiable even if your design changes each month. Glossybox achieves this by keeping a consistent box shape, surface finish, logo and font. With these elements in place, the background colors and designs can vary widely while still fitting into a consistent brand image.
What’s on the Inside
Your interior packaging needs to protect the contents of your box in a cost-effective way, but even keeping the practical considerations in mind, there are still opportunities to make your packaging stand out.
Dillard’s and New Beauty creates a custom-molded tray that has a space for each item. This not only useful for protecting delicate contents without weighing a lot, but it looks clean and showcases the abundance of sample products and the goal of affordability.
In contrast, Hatchery promoted its artisanal, environmentally conscious brand with natural materials and neutral colors.
Planning Your Design
The sky’s the limit in terms of what is possible, but you will need to find a balance between your imagination and practical cost concerns. Consulting with a dedicated subscription box fulfillment specialist will help you create the best possible look for your business while keeping costs down. Bring them samples of what would go in a typical box and ask them:
- What are the best dimensions for packaging this?
- What materials do I need to protect my contents?
- How do I keep the weight of my package down?
- What rates have you worked out with major carriers?
- What is your record on reliability and customer service?
- Can you show me examples of similar boxes you have designed?
With professional guidance, you can design memorable packaging that meets your needs at an affordable price.