The unboxing experience has become an increasingly popular phenomenon over the last few years, especially on social media, and now it has become an essential part of ecommerce companies’ marketing strategies. The term “unboxing experience” probably sounds self-explanatory, but it is more than just the mere act of opening of a box. It is a complete experience that refers to the unforgettable reaction and excitement a customer has when opening a package for the first time.
You might be thinking: Why is the way that a customer opens a package of something they know they ordered, so important? It’s important because if done right, it can be a strong selling point and great opportunity to grow your business through repeat customers, referrals and more.
In addition to reliable fulfillment services, Fulfyld is dedicated to helping our customers create unforgettable unboxing experiences for their brand with custom packaging. Custom packaging design elements will set your product apart from the moment a customer sees it. Our in-house packaging designer works with multiple brands to create a unique, high-end means of unpackaging product.
What does a perfect, unforgettable unboxing experience include?
- Durable packaging that is cohesive with your brand and simple to open
- Filler material such as bubble wrap or tissue paper
- A call-to-action mailer encouraging customers to share their experience using your social media handles and hashtags
- Packing slip/receipt
- Surprise element, sample or gift
- Custom or handwritten note
This experience is a powerful opportunity to build a connection with your customers before they even open your product. It brings incredible rewards such as repeat customers, referrals and brand visibility. Today, let’s go through the steps of how to create an unforgettable unboxing experience:
Choose the right packaging
Before adding your brand colors or your logo to any old package, its important to choose the right type of packaging for your products. The term “unboxing” doesn’t just refer to boxes. It refers to the unwrapping of any type of product packaging. Maybe you sell smaller products, so a large custom box is not necessary. Or maybe you sell products that can comfortably fit inside of a polymailer instead of a box, like t-shirts. Whether you ship your products in boxes, polymailers or padded mailers, be sure that your packaging agreeably matches your product(s). Reason being, if the package is too small for your product, it can cause your customer’s items to be bent or damaged upon arrival. If the box or mailer is too big, you may be overcharged for the size of the box, and not necessarily the product itself. To totally steer clear of these mishaps, choose the right packaging from the beginning.
Visually tell an intriguing story
After choosing the right package style, you want to focus on creating a memorable brand design for the package. The unboxing experience is the first touchpoint in which your customers will physically interact with your brand, so you want to wow them from the start. While adding all the bells and whistles may not be the most cost-effective solution for every brand, being intentional about what you can do to create a memorable experience is what’s important.
The goal is to make such an outstanding first impression that it invokes an emotional response, so much so that you’ve already astonished your customers before they actually even see what they ordered. Remember the feelings of excitement you had as a child on Christmas morning opening gifts? This experience is no different. If done correctly, customers will show your products off to everyone as well like you probably did on Christmas morning.
Maybe your company encourages “going green” and uses recycled packaging, or maybe you’re an advocate for equality, or you give back each time you get an order (think along the lines of TOMS shoes or Bombas socks). Get creative in making sure your packaging reflects your values by adding unique quotes on or in the packaging, or even including an insert with this information. Use this opportunity to inform your customers about the passions of your company through the power of storytelling. This shows them you’re more than an ordinary company that just wants their money, you’re also in the business of making a difference.
Add a personal touch
Adding your “personal touch” to each order can look a lot of different ways: including a handwritten note, custom tissue paper or packing materials, or a call-to-action insert encouraging customers to share their experience on social media.
This helps to establish a connection with your customers and allows them to see your “human side.” It’ll make them feel like more than just another customer. They’ll feel appreciated that you put so much thought into their order and ultimately, will be more likely to recommend your company to their friends.
At Fulfyld, we understand the importance of making a memorable impression on your customers. This is why we don’t charge extra for the inclusion of inserts or marketing materials. We help you add a personal touch to your customer’s shopping experience at no additional cost.
Position your products in an aesthetically pleasing way
No one wants to receive their items thrown into a package any kind of way, nor do they want to see a bunch of receipts, return labels, etc. when they first open their package. It’s something about seeing a well packaged product that is organized with each item positioned properly, that makes customers want to return. Again, we’re creating an experience. Pack and present your products in such an appealingly organized manner so that you don’t take away from the customer’s unboxing experience.
Be intentional not to slap your packing slips, return labels or even a bunch of packing material on top of the products before they actually see what they ordered. Let them see their order first, then add any extra papers or miscellaneous things.
Former Chief Design Officer of Apple, Jon Ive, is quoted in Steve Jobs saying: “Steve and I spent a lot of time on the packaging. I love the process of unpacking something. You design a ritual of unpacking to make the product feel special. Packaging can be theater; it can create a story.”
Think about what you see when you buy a new phone. More than likely you see the phone first, then the charger, instruction manual and other papers behind the phone. This is done purposely so that those items do not take away from your initial reaction during the unboxing.
Include extra goodies
Because who doesn’t love extras? By adding something extra to your customers’ orders such as free samples related to the product(s) they purchased, or any other freebies (as long as they are cohesive with your brand). This will make your customers feel exclusively special and cared for, which will in turn elevate their customer experience and encourage them to refer you to others as well as make repeat purchases.
Doing each of these things is a sure way to:
- Make a great first impression: First impressions are everything. The unboxing experience is a powerful way to differentiate your brand and excite your customers before they actually see your product. By making a great first impression, the feelings they have towards your product will also increase.
- Increase your brand’s visibility and reach: Wowing your customers is a sure way to organically increase your brand’s visibility and reach. Customers are more inclined to share the packaging and products they’ve gotten to their followers on social media when its visually appealing. This naturally exposes your company to potentially new customers and also gives you user-generated content to utilize and share on social media as well.
- Get free user-generated content and social proof: When your customers post their unboxing experiences on social media, this produces user-generated content (any form of content such as images, videos, text or audio, that has been posted by users on online platforms) and social proof that your company is exceptional and trustworthy. Since potential customers almost always read reviews before purchasing new items, this will further help your company’s reputation and show you are reliable and honest.
- Encourage purchases from new customers: In addition to user-generated content and social proof, a good unboxing video can easily attract new customers to purchase your product. Unboxing videos allow potential customers the chance to see how their experience could be and activates the customer psychology of FOMO (fear of missing out).
- Gain customer loyalty and increase referrals: After a great unboxing experience, your customers are more enticed to try your other products to repeat this same experience. Not only do they want to keep receiving this treatment, but they will also be more likely to recommend your brand to friends and family as well. Simply put, the unboxing experience boosts the perception of your brand and is a highly effective marketing tool.
While custom packaging may not be the route for everyone, there are still lots of ways to create an unforgettable unboxing experience that fits your specific needs and budget. Take advantage of these best practices and be mindful of your margins to create the most effective packaging for your company.
Want to learn more?
Contact Fulfyld today to learn how we help ecommerce businesses quickly and accurately fulfill their online orders.