20 June 2022
The silent salesman of the marketing industry, packaging is well-known for being the selling point for the majority of products. The average consumer makes around 10,000 decisions a day, but 63% of consumers are more likely to purchase a product from the packaging than the actual item.
Here are some quick-fire statistics that will show you the importance of packaging:
The Importance Of Psychology
Whether it is positive or negative, packaging has an effect on human psychology and businesses are understanding why it can be hugely beneficial to their sales if they understand it too. From what it looks like, to how it feels, consumers are placing more and more importance on the packaging of a product as supposed to the actual product. With social media encouraging a focus on how things look, and 40% of consumers putting pictures of their purchases online, it’s no surprise that businesses are making the most of studies and information to tap into new markets and make the most of existing ones.
Here is why the packaging you choose is so important when getting a potential customer to buy your product:
It’s All About Looks
The visual cues of packaging are such that consumers can see packaging from 12 feet away and recognise the brand, the shape, the colors. At this time the customer begins to engage with the packaging. From 3 feet away the consumer can begin to interact with the packaging, the details will be visible including size and smaller typography. From 1 foot away the consumer will decide whether to pick up the packaging or not – this is when your packaging needs to stand out from the rest and make a positive impact on the consumer. However it should still be recognisable as packaging. The mechanism should be familiar as well as easy to use – the memory model theory tells how humans are more likely to connect with objects which visually identify with mechanisms their brain already understands. Your aim is to get the consumer to hold your product in their hands, this creates a psychological reaction which increases the chance of reaching the sales point. If the consumer can touch it – they can better imagine owning it.
Here are the most important areas of design psychology to know about your target audience and brand, so as to get to that final 1 foot of interaction with the consumer:
Whatever your brand palette is, make sure it is attractive to your target audience and a good psychological match to what your brand is all about. Different colors stimulate different areas of the brain and are associated with different areas of life as well as business sectors. For example if your brand is going for a sustainable look then green, brown and neutral shades are the best palette to choose.
The shape of packaging has a more subliminal effect on consumers. Each shape emotes a different psychological reaction for your customer, most people prefer rounded shapes because they are ‘safe’ – from the perspective of evolutionary psychology our brains are wired to prefer softer shapes because they are less likely to cause harm and therefore do not need to be avoided or over-analyzed. Sharper shapes are more likely to cause stronger reactions to the image or brand, they are stronger and more masculine. Regular shapes cause reactions of familiarity; irregular shapes catch attention and show spontaneity, creativity.
Texture has an important role in consumers choosing packaging as well.It tells a customer what sort of business you are, the quality of your product and it also gives a tactile memory which will stay with your customers long after they have put the product down. Touch and memory are inextricably linked, for example in a scientific study participants were blindfolded and had to touch a variety of household objects then recall them when given the original and a similar one – participants had an 85% success rate in correctly remembering a product a week after spending just 10 seconds touching it. The accuracy rate for correctly recalling the objects when holding the original and a similar one immediately after doing the test was 94%.
Whether it’s an illustration, a physical image, a mascot or your logo – the image which you use for your packaging is very important. An image speaks a thousand words and your image must speak a thousand words which will make your customer instantly connect and want to purchase your product.
The size of your packaging is also important. How much of the product is actually held within the packaging, how much of the packaging is decorative, how much of the packaging is necessary within that. As well as reducing your shipping costs, correctly sized packaging is better for your sustainability rating and for your customers as well. A survey showed that 8/10 customers would prefer more sustainable packaging – so it’s in your best interests to keep the size in line with the size or quantity of your product and to use less materials on your packaging so it is easier to recycle and takes up less space when shipping.
Even the sound of packaging can have an influence on consumer purchase decisions, Sun Chip’s biodegradable packaging was introduced in 2009 but discontinued in 2010 because consumers complained that the packaging was too noisy. This is why market research is so important for designing the perfect packaging for your brand, without it you might as well be making a bridge without knowing a thing about engineering!
Whether you love packaging or think it’s just a helpful shipping device, you cannot deny that it has a huge impact on consumer purchase decisions. Getting the right packaging for your brand and products is incredibly important if you want to increase sales and improve customer retention. Three quarters of consumers would prefer to touch a product before buying it, but to get to that stage you need to have caught the attention of your potential customer. And that’s where BPAK can help.
If you want help improving your packaging and understanding the psychology behind your brand’s potential designs then get in touch with our team of trusted professionals at BPAK.