Posted on by Elspeth Devine

The unboxing experience is crucial to making a strong impression on consumers, but frequently involves multiple layers of expensively produced packaging. The big question for ecommerce retailers in 2022 is, therefore, how to foster a premium unboxing experience while simultaneously making packaging more sustainable. 

Fortunately, implementing environmental and cultural sensitivity into packaging doesn’t have to be either difficult or prohibitively costly. Here are five of the best strategies to adopt! 

1) Avoid over-packaging

When it comes to sustainability, less is definitely more. Using fewer materials will lower the energy footprint at every stage of the process while also reducing waste. Avoiding over-packaging in ecommerce can take a bit of planning, which is why the design phase is crucial. With the right blend of creativity and expertise, it is possible to achieve the ideal packaging vision without causing unnecessary environmental harm. 

2) Use 100% recyclable materials

This may sound obvious, but it is often overlooked by companies that have relied on the same packaging strategies for years. There are plenty of sustainable packaging options to choose from, from renewable substrates such as paper and wood to biodegradable plastic alternatives such as recycled Polyethylene terephthalate (rPET). There are a few things to consider. For instance, paper used for direct food-contact packaging cannot be recycled, and the colour, additives, and label inks and adhesives all influence whether rPET can be recycled. Therefore, expert advice from a company such as Kudos Giftwrap can help to find the most sustainable solution for your organisation. 

3) Use partners and suppliers who have sustainable practices

Truly sustainable ecommerce packaging requires environmentally sensitive practices at every level of the supply chain. All too often, companies think that they are ticking every sustainability box, only to discover that one of their partners is wasting energy or resources. Always check an organisation’s sustainability profile, and look for certifications and guarantees such as the Carbon Trust Standard and Forest Stewardship Council Labels. Ethical companies will also support social wellbeing and environmental causes, further helping to ensure sustainable practices. 

4) Consider plant-based packaging

Bio-science solutions are tipped to be the long-term answer to the sustainable packaging crisis. Natural products such as mushrooms, hemp, and seaweed have multiple environmental benefits. All are fully-biodegradable, fully-sustainable, and are often carbon-negative, meaning they actively take carbon from the atmosphere and – unlike paper or cardboard – do not re-release it at the end of their lifecycle. Currently, plant-based packaging options are limited, but watch this space because significant research and investment is being targeted at this solution. 

5) Have an annual packaging review

Solving the global packaging problem requires creative innovation and collaboration from many industries. As such, new ideas are being tested all over the world, and exciting solutions are constantly emerging. Companies that are serious about integrating sustainability into their brand identity can benefit from regular reviews to ensure that their packaging is the most environmentally suitable. Or, simply ask the experts at Kudos Giftwrap, who keep up-to-date with the latest developments on your behalf. 

What next?

Implementing sustainability into your ecommerce packaging process doesn’t have to be difficult, but the social and environmental benefits can be profound. To learn more about high-quality, cost-effective sustainable ecommerce solutions, get in touch with one of our packaging experts today!