Standing out on the grocery store shelf is not an easy task. No matter what you’re selling, from beef jerky to dish soap, there’s always a fight for the consumer’s attention. There are countless options, and packaging plays a massive role in how people perceive and react to the brand.
When a consumer goes in to make their choice, a lot is on the line – some folks love trying new things, while others buy brands out of loyalty. Some want lower calories or to know if the ingredients are vegan-friendly. But probably the main factor in decision making is how does the package look?
Appearances mean a lot, especially in the consumer-driven world. There is a reason teams of folks with marketing degrees pour over color choices and logo design. Everyone wants their product to be the one pulled down and put into the cart. Because we’re old pros at what packaging wins look like, we compiled this list of some of the Do’s and Don’ts we suggest when thinking about innovative food packaging design and how people react to it on the shelf.
Discover Your Brand Identity
We know you want your brand to be The One, the monster of the frozen foods section, the first bag of chips the customer goes for, but there’s a lot of reasoning that goes into these things. Don’t go crazy with splashy colors and a design that speaks only to you – think about who’s buying the product and look at what the market for that customer is like. Make sure the fonts are readable and artistic in a way that speaks to the product. Stay away from the clip art and work with an artist who can help create a clean look that offers trust rather than something a customer won’t be able to wrap their head around.
When looking at the market, look at your competitors and ask why are these brands doing well? What are they offering that we’re not? Colors and placement matter, so keep in mind that what you’re selling is the same as who you’re selling to. Dry roast coffee can go many places artistically, while baby snacks might need to be a little more dialed into that specific market. If you’re making a product designed with kids in mind, you need to consider the market and what appeals to the little ones. Even though the kids aren’t the ones with the purchasing power, they’re still the ones begging parents to make the purchase.
Keeping Your Food Product Fresh
One of the biggest things about good packaging is that it keeps food from being tampered with. So if you’re going for that bag of spicy tortilla chips, and you see the seal is broken, you know someone’s been snacking. Keeping air locked maintains freshness, and if you’re using a bag with a resealable zipper, that also helps retain freshness and longevity so consumers can open the package and toss it in their backpacks if they’re on the go.
Appropriately crafted packaging acts as an oxygen and water vapor barrier, two elements that speed up the demise of food. By depriving packaged goods of oxygen, foods retain their flavor longer.
A picture is worth a million words when it comes to creative food packaging design. No one wants to read a bunch of text on the package. Here on this site, it’s okay; that’s why you’re with us. But the product itself, you want to catch shoppers’ eyes with an image that speaks to the power of the product.
It’s also important to inform the customer, so there are no surprises. No one wants to buy something and get something completely different than expected. False pretenses can ruin a reputation fast and will likely make consumers boycott your products. Keep the customer in the know of what’s inside and its value, even if you have to say it with a simple photo.
If you’re a brand rooted in being eco-friendly, that’s a good thing. Many customers want to know what their favorite brands are doing to fight climate change. If your focus is on green products and natural ingredients, stamp it on your packaging, people want this information because if they’re shopping with a change in mind, don’t give them a reason to pass you over because of an oversight.
Best Types of Food Packaging for Stores
When you’re thinking seriously about food package design, shelf space consideration should be top of mind. How big your packaging is, works in consideration with your food packaging design, considering that if your product takes up a lot of space and isn’t selling, it’ll be taken off the shelves. Small, compact bags that get the job done can likely be more effective because they cut out a lot of the air and focus on the product inside.
Also, there’s color and style to consider. Can your product look good on an endcap, enticing people at random to buy? Consider what your design says and spend time detailing how you can satisfy consumers’ cravings. Your customer should never be confused. Successful companies know that providing clear information builds a brand.
Think about how your product can be highlighted. Why not change the package when the holidays come to meet the time of year? Adding some black and orange to the branding with some cobwebs isn’t that big of an ask. People love to buy anything that notates a special occasion.
Let’s talk if you’re considering ways to stand out against the competition. We know a thing or two about getting people’s attention online and in real life. We’d love to show you some samples of the brands crushing their demographics because they took the time to think about who they were marketing to and why.