Marketing / Branding

Tips to make your packaging stand out from competitors

Chester Avey

Updated: Dec 06, 2023 · 4 min read

Toolkit for download in this article

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Packaging can have a big impact on sales. Getting your packaging right can improve the perception of your brand and help your product make more sales with particular demographics. It's most important to stand out from your competitors—so here we provide a range of tips that can make your products stand out and make more sales.

Make it green

If you're creating new packaging then it's essential that you make it as green as possible. No, not the color (unless that’s a part of your branding)—the ideal. Having eco-friendly packaging is something that can endear customers to you, and make them choose you over competitors who don’t have it.

Select packaging that is either made from sustainable material, recycled plastic, or biodegrades. Your green credentials can genuinely win over customers. Make sure that you promote that you've chosen the environmentally friendly option.

And it's important to check the fine print on what the supplier really means by "biodegradable." Packaging specialists The Bag Broker understand the importance here of making a genuine biodegradable bag: “many of our competitors offer bags that can take up to 10 years to break down, The Bag Broker bags can biodegrade in just 90 days when composted properly."

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Know the enemy

If you want to have packaging that stands out from your competitors, then you need to understand the competitors and what they're doing. Take time to research your competitors and their packaging. Focus on what they all do that's the same; it's this that you can exploit and do something different with.

A great example of this is the beer brewer BrewDog. The company has very eye-catching packaging and a strong sense of its branding. But the thing that makes it stand out from other beers is the fact that the label is laid out horizontally, rather than vertically. This goes against logic, as the beers are generally only seen standing vertically, putting the logo and text at the wrong angle. But the fact that every other brewery has vertical logos just makes this beer brewer stand out.

Opt for higher quality

When you're doing research into your competitors, take a look at the quality of packaging materials that they use. If you want to really stand out, you need to think not about how you can produce packaging that's cheaper, but rather how you can produce packaging that is better. Quality is important for packaging, and it can make a difference.

Select high quality materials, and look for ways that you can improve upon the design. Customers unconsciously associate higher quality packaging with a higher quality product—so before they've even experienced your product, they can already consider it better than those of your competitors simply by the packaging you choose.

Change your packaging regularly

Not all packaging changes go perfectly. Tropicana is an example of a brand that tried to change its packaging, but the launch was such an enormous failure that the brand had to drop the change and go back to the original style. But while there will be some failures like this one, in general it's important to change your packaging on a regular basis.

Some businesses worry that changing their packaging will affect customer loyalty and see a reduction in sales. However, if you hold onto the same packaging for too long, your competitors will redesign and yours will end up looking stale, old-fashioned and out-of-date. Ultimately, it's better to take the plunge early—redesign to look better than your competitors and win back any potentially lost customers.

You might be surprised that a packaging change generally won’t affect the buying habits of customers who are loyal to your brand.

Final thought

It's important to stand out from the competition—and thankfully this is something that any business can do if it wants to. Of course, it's important to know what your competitors are doing, but don’t be afraid to take your own path and do something different.

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