We humans are, by nature, very visual beings. This means that when it comes to choosing a product, consciously or unconsciously, we are very influenced by the design, the visual appearance of the product, the label, the packaging.
A careful design, consistent with the marketing positioning of the product or brand, exerts a great influence on consumer perception and behavior and helps a lot to promote and sell not only the product itself but also, and not least, the brand/company that markets it.
Good packaging design even sets expectations regarding the price of the product as the consumer makes assumptions about the price of a product even before seeing the its price tag. This “perceived value” on the part of the consumer or buyer often allows a company to charge more for its product.
The benefits of well-designed packaging
When it comes to designing a package for a product, there are several elements that need to be carefully considered. The shape of the packaging, the type of material that will be used, the colors, the fonts, the graphic and textual elements, the functionality of the packaging itself. The combination of all these elements will play a very important role in the perception of the consumer/buyer as all this reflects and consolidates the personality of a brand.
As far as packaging design, some brands opt for more conservative approaches, others follow the trends of the moment, and others choose more daring and irreverent paths. Whichever approach is chosen, common sense dictates that the packaging should remain “simple” so that customers can get the information they want quickly and clearly because at points of sale the product will be competing with many others so we have just a few seconds to attract the buyer's attention and entice him to buy our product over competing products.
What criteria should a good packaging design meet?
First, it is important to understand that a package has two main functions:
A technical function, responsible not only for containing the product inside but also for protecting it during transport from the manufacturer to the distributors and while the product is on the store shelves.
A package also has a communication/marketing function that has to do with the correlation between the packaging design and the attraction/seduction of potential customers. Many companies carry out very careful studies on color schemes, designs and types of packaging in order to develop packaging that is more attractive to the target consumer.
This second function is also related to all the information that is placed on the packaging to instruct the consumer on how to prepare, consume, preserve the product and even discard/recycle the package. The packaging can (and should) also contain ingredient and nutritional information about the product. This information helps clarify the consumer and sell the product as it allows potential customers to get the information they need to make a purchase decision.
Still with regard to the marketing function, packaging also plays a decisive role in the process of differentiating a product or brand as it helps consumers to identify the product among its competitors on store shelves.
Ultimately, the old expression of “judging a book by its cover” is partially validated here, as in fact, studies on consumer behavior allow us to conclude that packaging really plays a decisive role in the differentiation and sale of a product. So, when designing the packaging for your products, consider all the variables mentioned above as these will make all the difference in sales and in the perceived value of your products/brands.
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