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How to save material with packaging optimization

11 January 2024 by
Quickbox Manufacturing Ltd, Lorna Donnelly

Wouldn’t it be great if everything came in nice, neat rectangular or square packages? Unfortunately, in life nothing is this simple.

We have all ordered products that have been delivered to us in ‘not fit for purpose packaging’, and as much as we all love popping bubble wrap (go on admit it), it is not a very cost-effective way of sending out your products.

So, what is packaging optimization?

In simple terms it is achieving the optimum results for your packaging whilst being as efficient as possible. It is getting rid of any unnecessary packaging but still having the correct box to ensure that your goods arrive to their destination in perfect condition.

I will now take you through the benefits of packaging optimization.

Saving Money

Now more than ever, we all need to save money wherever possible. Choosing a made to measure box as opposed to a stock box can help save money in a number of ways. Firstly, you are not paying to ‘pack fresh air’. You will be getting a box that is only using the amount of packaging materials needed and not paying for unnecessary excess cardboard. Secondly, having a custom-made box will alleviate the need to pack the box out with extra void fill such as bubble wrap. Not only does this add to the cost, but it is not recyclable and is not environmentally friendly (more on this point later). Finally, most couriers charge by the size of the parcel that is being shipped. Therefore, by choosing the right sized box can save money on distribution costs as you are not shipping wasted space.

Packaging Process

By choosing the correct size box for your products, you can save time on the packaging process. A bespoke box is quick and easy to pack and is therefore more time efficient. This can result in time savings and increased productivity. It can also result in less staff being needed on the packaging production line.

Boxes filled with polystyrene loosefill

Product Protection

By getting a bespoke, made to measure box, you are not having to rely on extra void fill to protect your products. Using the correct style of box, and the best board grade, will result in less damages and therefore save on refunds and returns. Our design team can work with your product and produce the best protective packaging for your needs. This can add extra protection to the areas of your item that needs it the most, resulting in less product damage. It will also make the product survive its journey, regardless of which delivery process is chosen.

Carbon Footprint

We all need to do our bit to help the environment. Using custom packaging is a good way of doing this. Oversized packaging takes up more space on lorries, and therefore more journeys would be needed to distribute the same amount of product that could be shipped more efficiently in the correct size of box. Then there are the extra packaging materials used to fill the void. These are often plastic bubble wrap, which as well as being non-recyclable, is very annoying for the end user to dispose of, and not a good customer unpacking experience.

Warehouse and Storage

By optimizing your packaging, you can save on warehouse and storage costs. The correct size box reduces pallet spaces which in turn means less storage charges.

I think this shows that there is a lot to be gained from Packaging Optimization. It helps in our fight to save the environment, and also results in cost savings for our customers.

Finally, we have a case study that we worked on with a customer recently. This shows how important the correct design can be when working on box prototypes. The study shows the customers original packaging, and then the new design that we worked on, resulting in a huge saving in material and a better cost price to the customer.

Quickbox Manufacturing Ltd, Lorna Donnelly 11 January 2024

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