Strategy is everything in business. Depending on your industry, you develop specific strategies for various operational lines. If you are dealing with physical items of any kind – raw materials, finished products, merchandize for distribution – of the important lines is the packaging strategy.
Why Do You Need a Packaging Strategy?
“Surely, as a logistic manager, I have more complex tasks to cover than designing a packaging strategy. Looking at the bigger picture is more important than getting lost in details”. May we remind you of the saying that the little strokes fell great oaks? Likewise, small details can derail a brilliant business strategy.
Packaging is sometimes seen as the ugly step sister of logistics. However, the use of professional packaging is the first and foremost guarantee your company has that its products are shipped safely. Adequately sized containers and boxes are the guarantee that you make the most of your warehousing space.
What about the concepts of sustainability and being a green company? You cannot support these statements if your business permanently generates wastes from single-use packaging materials.
So, How Can You Develop a Sound Packaging Strategy?
1. Detail the Ideal Shipping and Storing Conditions for Your Products
What would it take to keep your products in warehouse and ship them to customers safely? Do you need to implement a FIFO system for perishable goods? Do you need special packaging materials for sensitive products? Or do you need a completely customized packaging solution for products that do not fit in standard containers and crates?
Your packaging strategy starts with answering these questions. Once you figure out the basic features of an ideal packaging solution, you can move on to other specific benefits.
2. Consider Safety as Top Priority
Handling, loading and unloading containers and pallets can cause serious accidents. If you use cardboard boxes or wooden pallets, for instance, they can break and spill out their load. Sometimes, your employees could be seriously injured in such accidents.
You should consider safety even if you use automated logistic equipment for material handling. Modern plastic containers, such as the popular Euro containers, have a special design that allows easy and safe handling by robotic arms and smooth running down conveyor belts.
3. Keep in Mind the Total Cost of Ownership
The price you pay for packaging materials is not the only cost associated with owning those packages. A smart packaging strategy takes into account every other cost you may need to pay during the useful life of pallets and containers. How much time and money does it take to wash them properly? Do you need to repair these packages every once in a while? Do you need to replace them frequently?
As a rule of the thumb, every moment when your packages are not in use causes your business to lose money. You will not get a full return on investment in an adequate time and, thus, the total cost of ownership for those packages goes up.
4. Consider Ways to Promote Your Brand Image
Reusable professional packages never reach the end consumer. But this does not mean that they cannot be used as promotional materials for your brand. Consider the plastic crates with fresh pastry or beer. Shoppers look at them while selecting the product they want. If they are branded with the producer’s logo, customers will remember its name next time they make a purchase.
Some ranges of plastic packaging materials can be manufactured in a wide range of colors and have your company logo hot stamped on it. Apart from the promotional value, this type of customization lowers the risk of theft or loss for your packaging materials.
5. Get Professionals On Board
Last but not least, make sure that you establish a long term relationship with a professional packaging company. Companies like Logistic Packaging are not just suppliers of packaging materials. Our consultants are experienced in analyzing your packaging problem, finding the adequate solution, and being available for assistance and advice during the implementation period.
A smart packaging strategy is not just a good idea – it is the only option for increasing productivity and cutting costs in your logistic operations. Logistic Packaging is ready to help you create your own smart strategy – send us an email or schedule a live Skype chat with us!