5 Reasons Why Packaging Design Matters (Especially if You Aren’t a Big Brand)

Of all the design work I’ve done over the years, packaging design is probably the second most skipped design area. Proper branding in my opinion is the most skipped area. Packaging design is often an afterthought, the focus is usually on the product itself. It shouldn’t be. It’s a core part of your product and should be given the time and resources it needs. Let me show you why.

5 Reasons Why Packaging Design Matters

No matter what size you are, packaging is important. Especially when talking about physical product packaging. Packaging helps create the experience of buying and getting your product and it can help explain how to use the product. It protects the product during shipping and is usually the first thing to catch a potential buyers eye, even online. So, let’s dive into the 5 reasons packaging design matters!

Creates An Experience

Packaging is experiential and you can make that experience whatever you want through how you design it.

The iPhone is a great example because it really showed that packaging mattered to many consumers. There are entire YouTube channels focused on unboxing products. Creating a great experience from the time they start opening your packaging is important.

packaging design, 5 Reasons Why Packaging Design Matters (Especially if You Aren’t a Big Brand), Peterman Design Firm

Part of the Peterman Method™, our conscious design process, is Experience Coherence. This focus is to ensure the experience of your users and customers is the same the entire way through, at every touch point, and enjoyable. Packaging can make a product look more luxury, utilitarian, or any other direction you desire.

Protects During Shipping

Who wants a broken product? No one. It costs everyone money and time, and leaves dissatisfied customers. Especially with today’s world, shipping a product multiple times is typical. This is a typical path a product takes today: manufacturer > warehouse > distribution center > store/customer. It can also go to several different distribution centers depending on how the business is set up. Packaging can also be multi-part. You can have packaging for distribution where multiple units might ship together in a box. That’s in addition to the customer level packaging that gets to the customer or store shelf.


Packaging is a great place to include instructions or helpful tips!

Good packaging can also provide the instructions for using, setting up, or repairing the product. In a world where instructions need to cross language and ability barriers, they are very important to your packaging design.


Even if 95% of your customers don’t read them, or follow them, making sure they are there will ensure that 5% of your customers are happy with the product because they followed the instructions and use your product correctly now. That could be a 5% improvement of how people view your products, just by adding instructions that are usable and easy to your product. Packaging design must include this key component.


Your packaging is sometimes the best salesperson for your product. In a store, there isn’t anything else there for a customer. Yes, they have a phone they can look things up with, but if you give them all the information easily on the packaging, you make their life easier. You also make it so that they aren’t looking at a hundred other products while trying to find information about your product, right in front of them. Creating the right information to go on the packaging also gives you good sales copy for your website, amazon listing, or anywhere else you sell the product.

Brand Recognition


Packaging is an easy place to build brand recognition with.

Your packaging is a great way to share your brand and increase brand recognition. You’ll use photos of it online, and in a store it gets your brand in front of people. They might not buy right away, which is ok. Making sure your brand is clearly shown on your packaging makes it a great tool for your company as a whole. Making sure your packaging is on brand is important, it should always match with your existing brand.

While most of this really applies to physical products, it can also easily translate to digital ones, just the packaging could be the user interface, trial/demo version, or in the manual. Make sure your packaging is done right the first time, you never have a chance for a first impression. We’re one of the best product packaging design companies around and I’d love to help you. If you don’t go with us, make sure you find someone with the experience to make your packaging take advantage of these 5 areas in making your packaging amazing.

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