Packaging and Design

5 Steps to Building Brand Loyalty Through Your E-Commerce Packaging

Did you know that the customer retention rate in e-commerce is roughly 30%? And that the customer retention rate across multiple industries is 72%? In our view, the gap between the first and second rates represents a huge opportunity. Yes, e-commerce as a whole is expanding—it’s predicted that this industry will see over 9% growth for 2024. But the e-commerce businesses that are going to really thrive are the ones who invest into brand loyalty.

In the world of e-commerce, the “unboxing experience” is where the seeds of that loyalty are planted. Getting a package in the mail is the first physical, multi-sensory experience of your brand that your customers will have. Ensure that you are winning them over with a truly thoughtful packaging strategy.


Here are the steps to creating an e-commerce package that will drive brand loyalty and build your business faster:

1. Learn About Your Customer

How many really good questions have you asked your ideal customer? Do you really know what makes them tick? What are they looking for… and what turns them right off? The more you understand your desired demographic’s needs, expectations, hopes, and values, the more effective your packaging strategy will be.

2. Develop a Strong Strategy

Next, you want to take what you have learned about your ideal customer and translate it into a strong strategy. How can your customer’s needs, expectations, hopes, and values inform the details of your packaging? You might be surprised at how many opportunities there are to reflect your customers in your packaging choices. For example, do your customers:

• care about sustainable materials?
• want fast-as-possible fulfillment?
• need to save money on shipping?
• have strong aesthetic preferences?

Plus…don’t forget that a core part of your strategy must include taking every measure to protect your products. Invest in the right void-filling materials. After all, delivering damaged goods is the kiss of death for e-commerce; it will result in bad reviews and broken trust.

3. Make it Stand Out

Ideally, your e-commerce packaging should look like no other. A plain box? That won’t get you very far. Include all of your brand assets like colour schemes, logos, and core messages. You want your box to be attractive and also singularly on-brand.

4. Make it like Christmas Day

How much delight will your package spark for your customer? Will it feel like they are getting a special gift to unwrap? Remember that the experience of opening the package holds the most power to inspire customer devotion. In fact, 55% of e-commerce customers will make a repeat purchase if they get the product in premium, customized packaging. That’s why it makes sense to include features like branded tissue paper and personalized notes.

5. Figure Out Your Sustainability Strategy

Do your customers care about sustainability? Should you bother to source ecologically friendly materials for your packaging? Is ensuring that your packaging only uses the necessary amount of material important? Well…chances are, the answer to all of these questions is “yes”. Increasingly, consumers want their purchase decisions to have a lighter environmental impact.
78% of customers say they value sustainability, and a full 84% say that careless environmental practices would make them abandon a company. It matters!

So…if most e-commerce companies are retaining around a third of their customers, how much better can you do? Building brand loyalty is an underrated strategy for developing an exceptional business. In the world of e-commerce, packaging is one of the best ways to secure that loyalty. Create an unboxing experience that demands repeats! And please reach out if you want to talk to a packaging specialist about your big ideas.

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