Custom Retail Packaging

The Ultimate Guide To Custom Retail Packaging

Custom Retail Packaging
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A buyer’s shopping behavior depends on many factors like the packaging, look and feel of the product. Other factors like origin, age, and gender may also come to play. 

What may attract a particular group might not be the same for another group. Also, what consumers based their buying decisions on, changes over time. 

To influence a buyer’s decision-making process, a good business owner needs to be on top of their game. The seller must study consumer patterns over time, and pick a game strategy.

In this guide, we will discuss custom retail packaging as a secret weapon for business growth.


What is Custom Retail Packaging?


Before we go any further, let’s ask some deep questions. What do you think makes a customer feel valued? Purchases arriving in a generic cardboard box? Or, an attractive branded packaging that is unique to the company?

Suppose you are at a store, to buy something. At checkout, the store assistant wraps your purchase in bespoke packaging. Then, puts it in a special bag or box? 

You may not take note of that small act. Yet, the simple action may have a huge impact on you. It can increase the chances of you coming there to shop again.

That is exactly how custom retail packaging works. It is a customized packaging that is unique to your brand alone. It sets your business apart from others and makes it easy for buyers to identify.

The domestic retail market in America is huge and very competitive. There are over four million retail businesses struggling for buyer attention in the United States. 

In 2020, there were about 328,208 walk-in retail stores throughout the country. E-commerce businesses also account for a large percent of total retail sales. 

We can attribute this to the convenience of using mobile phones to shop. Many persons are more comfortable using a desktop, or mobile device for retail website visits.

Statistics report that total retail sales in 2020 was 4.06 trillion US dollars. A huge increase from the 3.81 trillion dollars recorded the previous year. 

Experts further predict that it will reach 5.35 trillion US dollars by 2025. There is no time like now, for business owners to take a chunk of the market share.

Your retail packaging is what customers see before getting to your product. It can contain your company logo, brand colors, and a short message. 


Benefits of Custom Retail Packaging

Retail product packaging is a major chess piece in the game of growing your business. It is the first thing that draws buyers to your products. If you play your cards well, your packaging can lead to increased sales, and business growth. Here are some things your stands business will gain from using custom packaging:


1. First Impression Matters

In the past, the only aim of retail product packaging was to protect the product. Now, it has a lot more purpose. 

So many products these days seem alike in the market. The attention span of buyers lasts only a few seconds and reduces as life gets busy. 

There is an urgent need to attract the attention of buyers at first glance. The best way to do this is through custom retail packaging. 

Packaging plays a big role when customers decide what products to buy. If you get your retail packaging right, they can grab your product right off the shelf. 

The first impression of your product matters a lot. It represents both your product and your brand. 


2. Custom Retail Packaging Increases Brand Value

Unlike regular packaging, custom packaging creates a better customer experience. It can increase the value of your product and boost brand awareness.

Plain packaging falls short of customer expectations these days. These days, they want unique and customized products over generic and plain-looking packaging.

Getting your packaging right will strengthen your brand value. It further establishes a stronger emotional connection with customers.

The goal is to create a long-term customer base. It will then translate to the overall success of your business. 


3. Custom Packaging Ensures Better Product Protection

Some products need extra protection during shipping. Custom packaging is the best fit for glass and other fragile materials.

It allows you to create a retail box or jars, that is the right shape and size of the product. If the item has a lot of parts, you can customize a package with compartments.

Doing this makes everything organized. Then, the foam inserts protect the delicate parts against damage.

When products arrive broken or damaged, it creates a customer service nightmare. First, customers will contact you to get it replaced.

Also, it can reduce their trust in you, making it less likely that they will order again. Fixing this type of mistake will cost you time and money. You can only prevent this by getting custom retail packaging from the start.


4. It Helps Businesses Leverage Social Media

Suppose you run a physical or online store. Whichever it is, social media is still important to your marketing efforts. Most social media platforms these days are vision-oriented. 

Some examples are Instagram and Pinterest. Good product packaging is a powerful way to attract an audience from these platforms.

For instance, great packaging encourages buyers to share on social media. In fact, the top three Youtube channels post regular unboxing videos. 

These channels have lifetime views of up to 163.58 billion. Imagine your product reaching this kind of audience from one social media post. 

It will build a loyal community around your brand. When people see other people fall in love with your products, they want to feel the same way.

So, the rise in popularity of unboxing videos is a sign to take action. Think about what you can do to make your package design shareable.

Have fun, experiment with colors and designs. Your new and existing customers want a branded experience. It is your job to deliver.


How To Design Your Custom Retail Packaging

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If you read up to this point, you know everything there is about custom retail packaging. Except how to make your unique design. With the following steps, we will walk you through the design process:


1. Create A Brand Story

The entire packaging process is a way of telling a story. Now, you need something that feels personal and strikes an emotion with the customer.

So, before you have a meeting with your designer, ask yourself some questions. What makes your brand unique? 

Does it create value for customers? What are these core values that your business operates on?

The answers to these questions are the key ideas your packaging must communicate. A generic design may look great but is not relevant.

It will not send any message across to customers. Also, it prevents you from leveraging the full branding benefits of packaging. 


2. Consistency is Key

The key to successful marketing is the consistency of your narrative. Suppose your design does not flow with the rest of your branding.

Your products and their packaging end up looking confused. Above every other thing, brand consistency creates trust with your customers.

You want them to see your product and know what you stand for. So, make sure all parts of your design come together to tell your brand story.


3. Choose the Right Colors

Colors play a huge role in how your packaging looks. It also determines the emotions your customers will feel from looking at it. Many buyers make buying decisions based on colors. So, you must understand color psychology and what every color represents. 

Red, for instance, makes a bold statement. It stands for energy, passion, and excitement. Yet, too much red can come off aggressive and overwhelming. So, you must choose the right amount and shade to convey what you want.

Green is a relaxing color. It adds a hint of freshness to your branding, as it represents health and growth. Any brand with sustainability as a core value may use green in its logo or motifs. These are positive symbols for any business.

Just like red, black also makes a powerful statement. If your target audience is the premium end of the market, incorporate black in your branding. Black represents sophistication and timelessness. Yet, too much of it can come off serious and oppressive. So, mix it up with lighter tones.


4. Select the Right Packaging Materials

Apart from being attractive, your packaging needs to have a functional purpose. The material you use will determine if the product is both pretty and functional. A product may appear attractive on the outside and useless after unboxing. 

Suppose you package fragile items in colorful, printed tissue paper. It looks attractive but does your brand no favors, as the customer may get damaged goods. 

You need something durable and protective. Package your aesthetic wrapping with something stronger, like a box.

Your packaging materials must also be cost and time-effective. Consider how long it will take to source materials. How reliable is the service? How long will it take to put the materials together?

These questions will help you to decide the right packaging material to use. Above all, customers value packaging that is eco-friendly. 

Using sustainable materials shows customers that you want to set a good example. So, your packaging choices can help sell that narrative.


Best Custom Retail Packaging Options


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Now you have an idea of what you want your packaging to look like. Here are some of the best custom retail packaging options:


1. Custom Retail Boxes

Custom retail boxes add an exciting element to your product, on the shelf or at the delivery point. It allows businesses to turn functional packaging into a valuable marketing tool.

Using well-designed custom retail boxes gives buyers the feel of receiving a gift. Even when they buy the item for another person, the cycle of gifting continues.

These boxes are also good for items that need protection against damage. Some of these items are glass bottles, candy, candles, etc. 

The quality of custom retail boxes reflects on the products inside. Also, their durability makes it hard to throw them away.

Many customers prefer to reuse these boxes to store items at home. If you print your logo on it, your customers get a reminder every time they see the box.


After shopping, customers often expect the brand interaction to end. Custom retail bags are packaging materials you can use to continue the interaction.

Some types of custom retail bags are paper gift bags, cloth totes, and plastic carry-on bags. These bags give customers the option to reuse and repurpose. 

With your brand logo printed on it, it is hard for them to forget your brand in a hurry. Customers like the idea of a good bargain, getting two for the price of one. 

Using custom retail bags sells them the idea of saving money.


3. Branded Folding Cartons

Folding carton boxes are paperboard containers designed to offer light protection against damage. In transit, storage, and display, goods may encounter scratches and scuffs.

These folding cartons are better suited for items like candles, pharmaceuticals, and cosmetics. They are also lightweight, which is a feature that makes them so popular.

You can print your logo inside and outside the package to draw attention. Also, you can print usage instructions, ingredients, and creative messages on the carton.

Doing this will give you packaging some functional purpose. You can make your branded folding cartons in different materials. 

Some of the popular styles are the straight tuck, reverse tuck, and automatic bottom. Play around with options and decide what works best for your products. 



Custom retail packaging is an intense design process. It caters to the exact specifications and requirements of your product and brand. 

Customers prefer unique packaging that feels personal to them. So, follow the steps in this guide to create the right custom retail packaging for your brand. 

At Arka we offer custom packaging solutions for any niche: we can help even if you need custom shoe boxes or lip gloss boxes!

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