Posted on July 19, 2021 by Michael Boik

DTC Holiday Packaging Head-start

Every Summer we write a post reminding our customers about the importance of getting a jump on their DTC holiday packaging preparations in advance of the often-chaotic end of the year. There are typically many benefits to ordering early, as laid out below, and this year will be no exception. In fact, it might be truer this year than in years past, given the current industry climate, given the post-covid impact. A holiday packaging head-start will save you time, stress and most importantly, money in the most crucial time of the year for many businesses.

Lead Times and Production Schedules

Lead times have never been more uncertain than over the last 15 months. Machine availability became scarce starting last year, and a post-covid backlog of orders and demand has not diminished so-far, well into 2021. Many companies who perhaps delayed launches in 2020 are ordering now and in great numbers, essentially making up for lost time. Board supply and availability has also been something to navigate lately, as what used to be 1-2 weeks to get board and materials has in some cases extended to 2-4 weeks. Of course many factors impact this, such as color, (white or kraft) sheet size, fluting and quantity.

Getting your holiday packaging in August or September will essentially guarantee you a spot in line, despite these many factors and uncertainties. You’re beating the holiday rush of orders, building in a bit of a safety net and not allowing for potentially long lead times to disrupt your business. Also keep in mind that you can order now, even if you don’t need your order delivered until later in the year. Our plants can schedule these production dates far in advance, giving them the flexibility to know what machine has to run on which days, and ensuring you are not at the mercy of timing and unpredictable factors.

Cost Savings

Although there have already been numerous increases on corrugated board in the last 12 months, there are strong indications of another increase set to hit in the coming months. Although the exact timing and the percentage of the increase amount are yet to be determined, you can be sure that everyone will be in a hurry to beat the increase once it is announced officially. Ordering now will ensure that you beat this rush and are not at the mercy of the machine availability and trying to beat the shot clock.

Allow For Any Potential Disruptions

It’s quite common on first-time packaging orders that something changes from the start of the project to the completion. Perhaps your product changes from a plastic container to a glass bottle, or your 3 pack becomes a 2 pack. Maybe you need an insert when you hadn’t planned for it. Maybe you need three different box sizes when you thought you needed one. Or perhaps you have a last minute branding change which requires a graphic redesign. These all happen, and the best way to navigate them is with the flexibility that time allows. Building in time for changes means not having to purchase expensive print plates only to require a new design. Or purchasing thousands of a box size that will no longer work for your products a few months down the line. Planning ahead often means avoiding costly errors.


Please Contact Us Today

Ready to get started on your DTC holiday packaging? As always, if you have any questions on any of our products or services, one of our branded packaging advisors is standing by to assist, with decades of experience behind them. Want to know more about custom packaging options? Please call us at 630-551-1700 or contact us via email at


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