Customers ‘Unboxing Experience’ – ecommerce packaging 101

unboxing experience custom printed mailers postal packaging

Nathan Calvert Nov 15, 2017 Ecommerce

With the Christmas peak period, and the key shopping days of Black Friday and Cyber Monday fast approaching, you’re going to need every trick in the book to make sure your e-commerce operation gets found first, engages best, and generally wins the internet.

Perfecting your customers’ unboxing experience needs to be high on the agenda

By now you’ll all be tired of hearing that ‘Content is King’, so I’ll only say it once. (I’ve already said it.) In this blog however I wont be banging on about how you need to diversify, tailor, and promote the hell out of your online content to win over those crafty customers – oh no. In this blog, I’ll be talking about the phenomenon that is ‘Unboxing’.

First of all, let’s take a trip over to knowyourmeme.com to find out what ‘Unboxing’ actually is. On this page ‘Unboxing’ is described as:

Unboxing refers to the practice of photographing or recording oneself while opening a new product out of its original packaging to showcase the contents as well as the recipient’s first impression of the product.

So why is the unboxing experience important to me and my business?

For typical human beings this means absolutely nothing, and quite frankly freaks many people out. However for the army of internet shopping veterans out there it means… “Oh yes, I totally love those unboxing experience videos, blog posts and tweets – they help me figure out what I’m actually thinking of purchasing, and whether or not I should go through with it!”

So apart from Unboxing helping to create a powerful ‘value proposition judgement’ in the minds of consumers, it also acts as a fantastic way to create a fashionable ‘trend’. Which as us savvy internet bods know, can sometimes turn into digital tidal waves!

According to an excellent article on knowyourmeme.com, the Unboxing Experience meme, trend, community or addiction is very much associated with tech products, fashion, beauty, and the ‘social’ aspect of shopping. This is borne out by the countless personal and ‘commercialised’ blogs & YouTube channels out there devoted to these areas. Examples include the ‘Unboxing Beauty’ blog – unsurprisingly all about beauty products, and this article from ‘GottaBeMobile’ about unboxing a new smartphone.

It has to be said that many of these blogs and YouTube channels are purposefully set up by clever individuals looking to earn money. They earn from product reviews and endorsements, traffic sales, affiliate marketing and advertising. So there is potential for a conflict of interest – but most recognise that it is their review and content integrity that sells them, even if they are quietly plugging product deliveries and earning royalties on the side.

Capitalising on the final customer touch point

There are two key themes here – the ‘social’ aspect to shopping, and the ‘end-of-the-line’ delivery. The social aspect to shopping is well documented – that people wish to spend time together spending money, eating, debating, having fun and generally massaging their ego and psyche (along with their credit rating!). The blogs and online videos (along with a huge social media output) allow a personal ‘home-based’ shopping experience to become a fully social experience. With thousands, and in some cases, MILLIONS of people participating or simply viewing the authors’ shopping experience – this is an easy win in any marketeers book.

The Delivery

Front and centre of this display are two wholly underrated parts of the home-shopping experience. The delivery; and the packaging. In this unboxing blog from Holy Snails, we see the whole thing played out. We have the unboxing experience, with a review, major gripes about the late delivery, and the authors views of the style of packaging.

That feeling often kills the act of repeat purchase, losing you a valuable and important customer.Holy Snails

Apart from being a typical unboxing experience review, it is clear that a great delivery experience (and the quality of the box packaging involved) hugely influences whether or not the customer will suffer from ‘cognitive dissonance’. That is that feeling that you’ve been let down, or ‘sold a pup’. That feeling often kills the act of repeat purchase, losing you a valuable and important customer.

Don’t miss opportunities to impress

When you’re selling online – consider using ‘unboxers’ to review your customers purchase and delivery experience. But most of all, make sure that if someone ‘unboxes’ one of your product deliveries without you knowing it that the product turns up on-time, unharmed, and WOWS them when they open the box packaging.

Ultimately, this isn’t about marketing content or fashionable trends. This is about a commitment to the ultimate customer experience – something ALL businesses in e-commerce or not should be looking towards researching and implementing.


Below we see an example of a well executed unboxing experience. Using our mailbox SP343, our customer Jollie’s have incorporated classy white print over kraft on the exterior and a striking high impact blue with key messages on the inside for an unboxing experience that’s guaranteed to leave a lasting impression. The mailbox, with it’s patented glued corners and over hanging peel and seal release paper for industry-leading assembly times (video evidence here), represents the pinnacle in fashion ecommerce packaging – like all of our products it comes with the ideal combination of fast fulfilment speeds, high impact branding, frustration free opening and made using ethically sourced materials. Guaranteed to leave a positive impression at the final customer touch point on the ecommerce product-purchase journey. 

 

About Nathan Calvert

Head of eCommerce at Lil Packaging. Loves all things technology focused. Lives and breathes digital. With a solid background working in print and packaging design, repro and pre-press artworking - an all round packaging/web geek (and proud of it!).

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