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First of all, I want to note a very important point: a very large number of factors affect sales. This is directly the quality of the product, and its positioning, and its price, and the representation of the product at points of sale, and merchandising, and advertising, and the competitive situation on the market, and so on. And, of course, design. Depending on the type of product, some of the above factors will be more important, and some less. But in no case can you rely on only one factor as a guarantee of successful sales – all this will be effectively sold only in combination.

However, many company executives, or marketing managers, tend to:

– Firstly, rely on design as a kind of panacea, a miraculous means in saving the sales plan;
– secondly, blame only the design for poor sales, not paying attention to many other factors.

As you understand, they are mistaken both in the first and in the second case.

A successful packaging design increases the attractiveness of the product, which of course affects sales. But we should not forget: packaging design is one of the main identifiers of the brand. Packaging design, like brand, is a PROMISE to the consumer. And the product either meets this promise (and sometimes even surpasses!), Or not. And if we meet the expectations from these promises, we will get a satisfied and, possibly, loyal Consumer.

Since the word design can cover quite a lot of different meanings, let’s agree on what exactly we mean in the aspect of “packaging design”: this is the result of project activity, expressed in a specific form, visual design and technical solution, which determines the aesthetic and functional properties of packaging for certain products. It sounds a little abstruse, but for sure. Simply put, packaging design is how the packaging looks and what functions it performs.

What functions can the packaging perform?
How do they affect product appeal? Let us dwell on each function in more detail and consider how a design can increase the attractiveness of a product.

1. PROTECTIVE. Historically, the main function of packaging is to store the product and protect it from spoilage, contamination and damage. Almost any product can be packaged in many ways. For example, tomato paste can be packaged in a glass jar of various shapes with a lid, a label or a sleeve label, or in a plastic bucket with an in-mold label, or in a sachet (or pyramid) made of a multilayer material; CD-ROM into a cardboard envelope or a complex construction made of plastic and cardboard, similar to how Microsoft does it. Of course, the same product in different types of packaging will have different attractiveness in the eyes of the Consumer. Changing the type of packaging can significantly affect the shelf life or better protection of the product, which also affects sales. The task of specialists when choosing the type of packaging: to satisfy the Buyer’s expectations, within a certain price range and affordable technologies. And not always the cheapest solution – the most effective.

2. ERGONOMIC. In other words, providing usability. A good design should be designed for an unprepared consumer and should be clear, simple and intuitive to use, without detailed instructions (there is a rule: “if you handle this incorrectly, most likely it is not your fault, but the fault of the designer”). This also includes practicality of use: it is convenient to transport, hold in hands, open / close, ease of dispensing, protection from children (and “from the fool”), ease of storage in a refrigerator or cabinet, easy access to instructions, etc.

4. AESTHETIC. The aesthetics of the packaging is determined by the perfection of form, harmony, the beauty of the graphics and the compositional solution – simply put, the packaging should be “COOLING EYE”. Pay attention to the following criteria by which you can determine the aesthetic value of packaging design.

5. ADVERTISING. Product packaging may be its best advertising, placed not only in points of sale, but also in places of storage and consumption. Moreover, this advertisement does not require additional costs. With the help of packaging it is easy to convey any motivating and informative advertising messages, for example, about promotions, discounts, bonuses, new products.

6. ENVIRONMENTAL. Recently, this function has become increasingly important. Ideally, the packaging should not pollute the environment, and the materials from which it is made should be suitable for recycling and reuse. In the very near future, this requirement may become the main one.

As you can see, to create an effective (read “selling”) design, it is necessary to take into account many components, and all of them should strengthen each other in a complex. In any case, initially it is necessary to concentrate on the maximum satisfaction of the Consumer and attracting his attention. Well-designed packaging adds value to the product in the eyes of the consumer.

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