The rise of ecommerce should also mean the customization of your package

With the rise of ecommerce, brands should think of new ways to stand out from competition and get customers to think about their brand name and be top of mind.

There are different ways companies can be creative and think of several possibilities to be distinct. The goal is to cut through the clutter and communicate messages with your customers that will make them listen to what you have to say and provide you their undivided attention.

Gone are the days of sending the same message to the masses. People want to view content they are more likely to relate or respond to. That is why it’s best to know your market segments by researching different personas. When going through this exercise, it can be possible that certain segments have been forgotten or overlooked. This is how companies get a better understanding of their customers and have a deeper comprehension of the groups of people they market to.

Once this is done, it becomes simpler to tailor messages based on the various segments found. The increase of ecommerce companies means more competition for your attention. Even if a company is not selling the same thing as another, the same person can be categorized as being part of the same persona for more than one brand.

This is where the brand’s identity and creativity comes in. A great exercise is to think of adjectives that make up the brand and have your messaging and image reflect that. Packaging is unfortunately something that gets overlooked but there is so much potential to making it stand out. If you think about it, the package is the first thing customers see when they receive your product. They don’t expect brands to have great packages, which creates the opportunity to be distinct and at the top of mind of customers.

Custom printed tape is a great starting point for customization since it is fairly affordable and will get the message across to customers. Having any element of your package custom made improves brand retention and recognition.

Packaging should be just as important as your product

When we meet someone or get exposed to a brand for the first time, we start forming opinions right away. In today’s competitive marketplace, it is vital to know how to stand out in a positive way.

With the increased popularity of ecommerce, customers may have never been exposed to a physical attribute of the brand yet. The package would be the first thing they will see and touch even though they know what to expect in the box. For example, consider the situation where you were to receive a package and the box is torn, looks cheap and worn out. This sets the precedent on the image of the brand and how their products are perceived to be.

Packaging tape is an important component in sealing boxes to make sure they get to their intended destination in one piece. It is too bad it is not a decision more highly regarded since there are a lot of variations to the product. If more thought were put into it, a different kind of packaging tape could be more beneficial to the operations and the other supplies used in the packaging process. A great example would be sealing in cold or freezing temperatures. Not all tape performs the same in this environment. Another example is when highly recycled boxes are used. Not every kind of tape sticks well to them therefore it is best to look into the each case to use the packaging tape that is right for you.

How to chose the right packaging tape

As mentioned above, there are certain aspects to consider before making a choice on tape for your specific application. All these factors can have an affect on the quality and the security of the seal: grade, environment, substrate, application method and tape quality.

Grade means the thickness of the film and amount of adhesive applied. When it comes to environment, there are two things to consider: the temperature of application when the tape is used and the temperature where the tape is stored. This all matters since adhesion is compromised. Not all tapes perform the same and have their pros and cons in various situations. Substrate is the surface on which the packaging tape is applied to since not all boxes are made the same.

When it comes to applying packaging tape, there are two ways to do so: manual or machine application. The tape used in a machine application needs to have an easy unwind to reduce tension that causes tearing and stretching. The quality of the tape is another thing to take into consideration. There are a few tape suppliers that have a good reputation on providing consistent product quality. You can rely on their tape to have a consistent film thickness, thick adhesive coating and so on. Even though packaging tape physically takes a small part of the overall business process, taking the time to choose the right one will far outweigh the decision to go with the most affordable.

How to Package your Box for an Optimal Customer Experience

Shopping malls across the United States and Canada are acquiring less traffic as online shopping becomes more prevalent. This year’s second quarter, brick-and-mortar stores have experienced a decrease of 8.6% vacancy rate. With an increasing number of retailers closing shop such as Sears, JC Penney, Toys “R” Us and Bon Ton, there has to be a shift to increase customer experience.

As ecommerce is taking up more market share of the retail space, brands needs to rethink of ways to flourish. Depending on the type of business you are, there are great ways to be at the top of mind of customers. Brick-and-mortar stores would need to think of ways to draw people in with added services, promotions and events. Also no matter if a company sells only online or both online and in store, it is imperative to think about how to package your product to customers.

Some companies may consider packaging as an afterthought but it has to be perceived as an essential and powerful marketing tool. Sealed Air, a packaging company surveyed 2,000 respondents and 58% said that if they receive a damaged or broken product online, they would make their future purchases from competitors. It is clear that as more consumers take their shopping online, the more they would have to think about superior packaging solutions.

Trends in packaging

Frustration free customer experience packaging is a trend that is here to stay since customers have different expectations as Amazon places a precedent on how to package for ecommerce. When you look at products on store shelves, they are packaged to catch the attention of people walking by with the over-the-top packaging and features to prevent theft. This does not translate well when sending the exact same product packaged this way by mail. Brands should think about unique packaging designs to elevate their brand in the eyes of customers. The goal is to make the unboxing experience memorable.

A great way of achieving this is to bridge the gap between online and traditional retail shopping. Brands should increase levels of customer satisfaction and enhance buyer experience through good packaging. Personalized packaging will set you apart from competition since it will provide a closer relationship between a brand and customers.

As for the kind of packaging customers are expecting brands to use, it shouldn’t come to a surprise they are looking for environmentally friendly and sustainable materials. Gummed paper tape is a great example since it is made of paper and can be recycled with the box. Another example is Pizza Hut’s DJ Pizza Box that can be double as a portable DJ deck. That being said, there are a lot of ways to building a company’s brand reputation and packaging plays an essential role in providing high customer service standards.

Creating an unforgettable unboxing experience for your brand

When it comes to certain businesses such as ecommerce, the package shipped to the customer will represent the most direct touch point. This is because they have never been in contact with a tangible item of yours previously. Think about it, this is going to be the first time they will be in physical contact with your product therefore it is important to create a great first impression. It is quite surprising since this strategy happens to be one of the most under-utilized opportunities companies seize.

What is brand-packaging experience?

Most companies don’t think about the packaging of their products or the unboxing experience. It is a necessity to package your products to keep them protected during transit. But with increased competition, shifting consumer habits and the evolving ecommerce market, it is important to look at the whole experience rather than the product itself.

Branded packaging is the thoughtful assortment of packaging materials and how the products are presented within it. The idea is to add more value for customers and your business through the packaging experience. Custom printed tape is a great way for companies to add value to their brand. The additional cost of getting your logo printed on tape will benefit your brand immensely due to its many advantages. It will add security to your product, increase brand recognition and retention and make your packages stand out from competition.

For ecommerce companies, there are less touch points to impress customers therefore it is great to use packaging to your advantage.

Why providing branded packaging is important

A large part of building a long-term successful brand is to make sure customers keep coming back. If you have any experience in business, it shouldn’t come to a surprise to you that it is more expensive to find a new customer than keep selling to a current one. Dotcom distribution found in 2013 that 52% of consumers are more likely to make repeat purchases from a company who offers premium packaging. Also 4 in 10 customers would share an image of a delivery if it came in a unique package. There is value in providing beautiful packaging for your customers that go beyond customer experience and into residual marketing effects.

Custom branded tape is a great place to start since it will communicate your brand logo and message as well as help generate the attention you want for your company.

How to Make Packaging More Sustainable

Since we play a role in the packaging industry, we are always looking for ways to be more sustainable and recommend more eco-friendly options to our customers. Packaging is a necessary product that is needed to get items shipped to customers. Therefore there is no way of getting around the fact that packaging is required. Depending on the nature of a business, the design of the package will be different. For example, a company in the B2C space will have more creative packaging that stands out since the volume of orders will be smaller and it will increase brand recognition and retention.

Road to sustainability
There are many ways to make sure the packaging ordered is more sustainable. It is best to keep informed with the new more eco-friendly products available on the market. When it comes to tape, the best option for companies that are looking to reduce their consumption of plastic is to opt for gummed tape, also called kraft paper tape. Since the film is made of paper, it can stay onto the box to be recycled. The adhesive is made of natural ingredients as well making this option the most eco-friendly as compared to other packaging tape solutions.
What are the alternatives?
When it comes to boxes, there are ways of knowing whether or not box is made of post-consumed paper. There should be an indication of the percentage of recycled content it is made of. Be advised that polypropylene tape, the most commonly used tape on the market will not stick that well on highly recycled boxes. On the other hand, no matter how recycled the box, gummed tape will always bind well to it.

Filling material is another cause for concern to many since styrofoam is the traditional solution. This material is not only hazardous to produce but it also cannot be recycled therefore it generates an enormous amount of waste. Alternatives include corrugated inserts, biodegradable foams or fillers and organic starch cushioning. These can cost more than the industrial versions but will have less of an impact on the environment.
Reduce the volume of packages
In some cases, we receive packages that are much bigger than the item ordered. Not only are companies using more packing supplies, but it also takes up more place on delivery trucks. In this case there are multiple reasons to reduce the volume of packages especially if it is not necessary to have a certain package be bigger than it should.

Need help designing your custom printed tape?

Ok, before even thinking about custom printed tape, the best course of action is to have a great logo that will capture your audience’s attention. There are certain things to think about when going through this task. One would be the use of a visual double entendre, which means to have two images in one. It is a great way to get your logo to stand out and is more likely to reinforce brand visibility and retention. In addition, your audience would appreciate the little mind game and will enjoy the design more because of it.

Another consideration, which is just as important, is the color palette of the design. Any designer will tell you that color carries meaning and communicates ideas. Not only is it important to have your logo’s colors stand out and be vibrant, but also you should think about how it will look in grayscale or a true single color version. Since custom printed tape has limited amount of colors that can be printed on the film, it is good to have your logo available in one tone for these instances.

There are always going to be fads that come along in designing logos. It is best to steer clear from them since it can become unoriginal fast. When it comes to your logo, it has to be well thought up.

Generally the first sketch is going to be fairly generic so it is recommended to take up a few pages of sketches to figure out which path you would like to take. A good direction to take is using custom lettering since it will give your logo a unique feel. All this information can make someone feel a little overwhelmed but another word of advice is to keep it simple. Picture the logos for Apple and Nike. If you think about it, they are just an image of an apple and a checkmark.

To further guide you, think about proportion and symmetry to create a balanced logo.

These circles are a good guide to figure out how to draw out the logo for Twitter. Every logo should have a good story full of meaning both obvious and hidden. Even a small added element to a logo can give it more depth and meaning. It is good to keep playing around with it until you find the one best suited for you.

Once your brand logo is all figured out, having it show up everywhere such as on your custom printed packaging tape will reinforce brand recognition and visibility.

How Going Lean Led To Increased Productivity and Sales

In order to make custom products, the production and manufacturing of the process would have to be adjusted for every new order. Looking at our business, this would cut down the printing time of tape since a new plate would have to be installed with every order. For the production team to print the optimal number of tape to fulfill the highest number of orders, there has to be a system in place to reduce wasted time and other resources.

Going Lean

For manufacturing companies, it is best to start looking at the production team to see what can be improved in order to accept and fulfill as many orders in a given time with the least amount of waste. Lean manufacturing is a system that minimizes waste without sacrificing productivity. The concept was first introduced by Toyota, which has helped them become one of the world’s largest automakers today.

A great way to describe what going lean means, is through a series of tools that helps in identifying and getting rid of waste. Another approach brought forth by Toyota is improving the flow or how smoothly it runs. In some factories, the layout of the machinery and certain work stations can be placed to reduce the number of steps or walking back and forth to get a task completed. There are many ways companies are engaging in wasteful tasks without even being aware of it.

Types of waste

When companies produce too much product at one time, it can result in poor workflow and excess inventory. Since we are human, mistakes can be made in paperwork, product quality or poor delivery. There are ways in which these issues can be avoided if there is more organization in place.

Unnecessary inventory will take up space in the warehouse, which can lead to delays, excessive cost and poor customer service. Other times it all comes down to processing work using the wrong set of tools or procedures.

There may even be too much transportation due to excessive movement of various information, products and even people. This all leads to wasted time, effort and cost.

On the other hand, there can be periods of inactivity of various things such as people, information and product. When this is the case, it is a result of poor workflow and long lead times.

Lastly, when the workplace is organized in such a way that increases unnecessary motion, it should be time to rethink the workplace layout to reduce poor ergonomics, excessive bending or stretching.

How to keep your brand relevant

When it comes down to it, even with a great product or service offering, it is important to keep an eye out for new opportunities to grow your business. Depending on the industry, the lifespan of your product varies. For example, tech products will go through the lifecycle stages more quickly as compared to a food product.

Innovation is key in all businesses – No one is immune

Spectra Tapes is aware of the various ways a company can keep up with the trends to remain competitive. One of them is to keep learning about the industry and the various improvements in technology to help businesses grow. Attending trade shows is a great way to meet people that compete in your space and learn more about ways to remain competitive. This year, Spectra Tapes is attending Pack Expo International in Chicago to monitor the market and communicate directly with customers. This is a way for Spectra Tapes to monitor the market and adjust their product offering to what customers are looking for. There are also different kinds of sessions of which speakers will talk about where they see the industry in the coming years as well as other companies offering in-booth demos.

Extending the product lifecycle

The longer companies have been around, the more they know about keeping up with trends to appeal to a new market or audience. For example, the casino industry is facing the issue of an aging customer base. Therefore, they would have to figure out how to capture the new generation. Spectra Tapes is aware that in order to remain competitive, they should do their research and be creative to have a list of opportunities available.

There are different ways companies can extend their product lifecycle. Product extension is the way to keep your product or service relevant. This can be done through advertising, reducing the price, adding a new feature, looking into new markets or updating the packaging.

Customer Satisfaction: A Leading Motivator at Spectra

Spectra understands that when it comes down to it, brands that don’t spend time thinking about different ways to make sure their customers are satisfied will not be in the position to confidently say they will come back. It may sound pretty straightforward but being consistent in your work is something that is very powerful.

Companies today have various channels to be able to interact with customers. The so-called customer journey spans all components within a business, which include anything from buying a certain product to using it, or getting in touch with a customer service representative in case help is needed with the product. Another one can be making the decision to using a product for the first time. It is one thing finding a client; it is another being able to retain them for a long period of time. In order to find a new customer, these figures highly depend on the industry which can range anywhere from $5 to $500. These figures depend on the marketing efforts of companies.

It is surprising the amount of companies that cannot provide a consistent customer journey. With increasing multichannel and multitouch world, it is more important than ever to make sure your service is consistent. Another aspect that customers place a lot of importance on is the feeling of trust. That is the main driver of satisfaction and loyalty in most industries. When companies are consistent in their product and service, it is easier to be trustworthy. As this becomes the case, the secondary sentiment is customer loyalty. Some deciding factors on brands to keep doing business with are ones customers feel closest to and those that are most trustworthy.

In order for customers to know about your brand, there will have to be some marketing messages that would need to be shared and made. The way brands communicate with customers by making promises as well as promising to keep them says a lot about your brand. The consistency of these messages is key since a brand can promise lowest cost, they would have to deliver on this message over time.

To put this plan into motion, it is wise to take a journey-based approach. Think about the different ways customers come in contact with your brand and create teams that are responsible for the end-to-end customer journey. First focus on the most important touchpoints and keep an eye on your metrics. Then fix the areas where negative experiences are commonly found.

It is important for companies to get this all right as quickly as possible since those who are facing inconsistency in their customer service are using up needless resources without truly improving the customer journey.

When a customer at Spectra places an order for custom printed tape, an approval sheet would have to be filled out and signed off by the customer before it goes to the press. This ensures the customer is satisfied with the outcome of the process so far until the product is ready to be shipped off. Also any stock printed tape or carton sealing tape that does not meet the standards of customers can be returned.

An In-Depth Guide to Kraft Paper Tape: Everything You Need to Know

You may have noticed the rising popularity of kraft paper tape in recent years used mostly by ecommerce companies to package their boxes. This was not the case about a decade ago since the largest player in ecommerce was just emerging. The company who I am referring to is Amazon and once they started using custom printed kraft paper tape, others followed suit.

It is important to note that not many companies were using kraft paper tape to seal their packages at the time. Tape experts are even quoted saying that kraft tape was on its last leg until Amazon started using it.

Why Has Kraft Paper Tape Been So Unpopular?

The reason why this has been the case is the difficulty of application. For the adhesive to activate on kraft paper tape, it needs to come in contact with water. There shouldn’t be too much or too little water applied onto the adhesive since it will not stick very well to the box. It is possible to do this manually but it will be time consuming and can get messy. It is best to use a machine to apply the tape since it will be able to measure the exact length needed as well as apply the water onto the adhesive.

The Advantages to Using Kraft Paper Tape

Kraft paper tape is the most environmentally friendly packaging tape on the market. Since it is not made out of plastic, it is not at all necessary to remove the tape off the boxes before recycling them. Kraft tape is the only one that is 100% recyclable and biodegradable. If you don’t think it can get any better, the adhesive is made of vegetable glue and is completely soluble in water. There are no solvents used in its manufacturing process and the gum breaks down easily in the recycling process.

Ecommerce companies seem to have adopted this tape more rampantly as compared to other industries. But this kind of tape is made for a vast array of applications across many industries.

How kraft paper tape works is the adhesive, once wet and activated, soaks into the carton fibres for the tape to be fused onto the box for extra security and tamper evident packages. Another added benefit is kraft tape will increase the look of your box. Since the look of the tape is similar with the box, it looks sleeker. If you want your package to stand out, it is possible to print various colors on kraft paper tape to promote your brand.

If you are still not convinced, kraft paper tape ages and deteriorates slower than other packaging tapes. In addition, it is resistant to humidity and extreme temperatures. For extra security, kraft tape can be reinforced with fibreglass strands going through the tape. All these advantages allow it to be a viable option for all businesses.