There are several important differences between a concept, yet to be launched program, and one that has developed a customer base and is growing steadily. For the brand new program with zero subscribers, we recommend reading the first related post below to help determine if branded boxes are truly in your best interest at this time.
This blog post is aimed at the program that has some experience and is certain about:
- the size of the containers they want to use
- the number of boxes they ship out monthly
- last but not least – their identity.
From Labels to Branded Boxes
We often recommend labels for a customer who is not certain about the three above points because custom branded boxes is a commitment and an investment. While labels can be easily and inexpensively be changed on the fly, branded boxes will involve print plates, order minimums and possibly even an expensive and custom cutting die.
Labels usually stop making sense when you begin using more than a few hundred per month because they are typically expensive to print and to apply. Even if you print your own labels in house, when you add the cost of the label, the cost of the ink to print it and the labor cost of applying them to your box, they are an expensive and ideally only temporary solution.
On Subscription and E-Commerce Boxes Size Matters
If it was of little concern before this year, it is now a major issue after January 1st when we all became familiar with a new term called dimensional weight or usually shorted to dim weight. The package carrier companies such as UPS, FedEx and USPS used to be focused almost totally on the weight of the box being shipped. There were typically oversized package up charges for very large packages but smaller, lighter packages kind of flew under the radar.
Now every package, regardless of actual weight, is charged by its size and how much room it is going to take up in the truck. This takes right sizing your box from being a good idea to being imperative. Keep in mind that for most subscription and E-commerce companies, shipping is the single largest expense, so managing this cost will prove to be critical to the success of your program.
Bottom line – use the smallest box possible for your product. This is especially important for people who began their program by utilizing stock size boxes. If that 14” X 10” X 4” box can be reduced to our standard 12-11/4” X 9-1/4” X 4” box, it will save you money multiple ways.
Custom Printed Minimums Can Be Blessing or a Curse
We are able to run as few as 1,000 custom printed boxes which many in our industry cannot or refuse to run. However, 1,000 boxes is a lot of boxes if you only have a handful of subscribers. You not only have to worry about shipping and storage costs but what if you determine that you guessed wrong on the size? With a few months of experience, a program owner knows if the box should be a little larger, or even a little smaller.
The good news is that because of set up costs, the price on 2,000 boxes can be anywhere from 15 to 20% less expensive when compared to a 1,000 box run. The more subscribers you have, the easier it is to get to the larger quantities that can result in substantial savings.
Branding Permits your Customers to Easily and Quickly Know Who You Are
When we say a branded packaging customer needs to know their identity, we mean no disrespect. In fact, six months after we founded our company, we realized we were not sending out a consistent message on who we are. We decided our company was going to focus in areas (such as sustainability and branding) that our name and logo did not communicate. So, we re-branded.
It is just not about what you want to communicate but how you communicate it. You may change your mind or direction after some real world experience and some all important customer feedback. After all, isn’t the customer the reason we all do what we do? Can we afford to be stuck on a design, logo or message because a graphic artist and/or we think it looks great?
Some of these decisions and changes are not as easy to make as you may think but a lot easier than some people fear. The key is to work with a company that has the experience and resources to make your change as smoothly as possible at minimal cost. Please contact us at Salazar Packaging or call us at 630-551-1700. We are more than qualified and capable of helping you through the process.