Receiving an item that arrives broken or does not meet our expectations can be quite disheartening.
A recent home delivery review by the Interactive Media in Retail Group (IMRG) has found that, for the second consecutive year, over 50% of respondents believed they had received damaged goods. With increased online demand during the pandemic, this does not come as surprise.
However, processing the growing number of returns puts additional strains on retailers’ resources and capabilities. Some products may also be in short supply due to issues with imports from other countries, therefore, it may be more difficult to ship a replacement.
If you are dealing with an increased rate of returns, below are 5 packaging tips to help you maximise product protection in transit.
1. Ensure the size of your packaging is appropriate for the size of its contents
Forty-three percent of respondents in the IMRG Home Delivery Review believed they had received products in improper packaging last year. The main reason for customer complaints was packs that were too big in relation to its contents (56%).
It is not the best idea to ship a small item in a huge box. The contents will rattle during transport, which may cause damage. Always ensure your packaging is the right fit for your products and leave just enough room for cushioning. This will maximise your chances of products arriving in one piece.
2. Apply the right amount of cushioning
You do not need an excessive amount of cushioning to ensure safe delivery of your products. Smart packing is key to ensuring enhanced protection while reducing costs and maximising use of your packing material.
If you are using loosefill, you may want to consider some alternatives. Paper, for example, perfectly absorbs shocks and provides enhanced product protection in transport. It is environmentally friendly and suitable for many applications.
3. Make sure your package is properly sealed
A good seal is essential to ensure your products do not fall out of their packaging in transit. Look for boxes, mailers and envelopes with a self-sealing lid – they use strong adhesive, which eliminates the need for tape.
Consider gummed paper tape (also known as water-activated tape) for more robust applications. It is stronger than standard packing tape, has great tamper-evident properties and ensures smart presentation of your parcels.
4. Review your current packaging
Perhaps, you have always packaged your products in a certain way. However, if you are experiencing a high number of returns, it might be time to look at packaging to reduce damages.
New packaging solutions appear on the market all the time. They are designed to provide better transit protection and often with environmental considerations in mind.
This leads us to our final point…
5. Speak with a packaging expert
If you are not sure which packaging is right for your products or have bespoke requirements, speak with a packaging expert. They will be able to talk you through the suitable packaging to reduce damages, based on your needs and budget.
Macfarlane Packaging offers a free packaging review where we can look at your existing solutions and packing processes to identify improvements and help you reduce costs across your entire packing operation.
This is a non-obligation service, so do not hesitate to contact us today to request it.
IMRG Home Delivery Review 2021: https://imrg.org/data-and-reports/imrg-reports/consumer-home-delivery-review-2020-21/