Return of the Packaging: Why Online Shopping Requires Better Packaging

February 17, 2015

Ecommerce is taking over the world. You can buy nearly anything online now — from fresh produce to zombie survival kits to unicorn meat. As more items are purchased online, more items are returned as well. (For example, if your unicorn meat has gone bad … or you realize that unicorns are mythical beings.) Online retailers have average return rates of 20-40%.

The first problem with returns is self-evident: losing the sale or replacing the item. However, the cost to return an item is incredibly high for retailers. The return cost for logistics, packaging and shipping is so high that many retailers would have you keep a returned item than ship it back.

The continued rise of ecommerce is just another reason why your packaging solutions matter. What is the single biggest thing that retailers can do to minimize their returns? Invest in consistent and standard packaging.

You might think that you’re saving money by being cheap with your packaging options. Just wrap an item in bubble wrap or drop it in a box of packing peanuts. Easy and cheap, right?

Nope. Your costs will explode when your customers get damaged items. It’s a short-term gain for a massive long-term loss. Smart businesses are investing in packaging that will consistently product their items.

The return cost of damaged goods is huge for retailers, but it’s also harmful from a branding standpoint. If you received a broken item from a retailer, are you likely to buy something from them again in the future? Probably not.

All online retailers needs to be paying attention to the logistics and packaging solutions to ensure minimal returns and maximum customer satisfaction. You need a strategic and innovative partner like Ernest that can help you navigate these rocky waters.

If you want to improve the packaging for your online shipments, contact us today. Your message — unlike your online orders — is something that we’ll always return.