The importance of packaging

According to this article, your product’s packaging can mean the difference between success and failure on the shelves. It asks you to closely consider six aspects of packaging during the design process: clarity and simplicity, honesty, authenticity, shelf impact, extensibility, and practicality. This article from The Guardian also firmly holds that the packaging of a product is well worth investing in.

But what do consumers think? 

We recently asked Roamlers in four participating countries (Chile, Germany, Sweden, and The United Kingdom) what aspects of packaging appeal to them. It seems that consumer preference varies from country to country.

For most German, Swedish, and United Kingdom (UK) Roamlers, the colours of the packaging were what appealed most. On the other hand, less than half of Chile’s Roamlers thought colour was important. 48% of UK Roamlers valued the font/text type on products, compared to just 28% in Chile and Sweden, and 24% in Germany.

The shape of the packaging was what made it stand out the most to Roamlers in Chile (61%) while only 28% of the Roamlers on average in the other participating countries agreed. The size of the packaging was considered the least important aspect of packaging appeal by the Roamlers in all participating countries.
Below are some examples of product packaging that appealed to Roamlers.

One Roamler was particularly impressed by the packaging of the Thomas J Fudge brand, a brand selling bakery delicacies:
“I could have taken pictures of any of their products. They are all beautifully illustrated. Love their creativity!”
The Thomas J Fudge brand is a good example of successful packaging. It manages to combine different fonts, colours, and illustrations without losing simplicity, clarity or consistency. The imagery on the packaging is quite unique, setting it apart from its competitors, many of which will simply have an image of their product (biscuits) on the packaging. The small window showcasing the product ensures that the product being sold is clear to consumers.

Another important of successful product packaging is being honest about your product. This article from Forsefield Design shows how dishonesty about your product can hurt sales. If the graphic on your packaging does not match the product inside, it will ultimately disappoint the consumer and may cause them to switch to other brands. An example of dishonest packaging found by a Roamler is shown below.
We asked Roamlers in seven participating countries (France, Germany, Italy, United Kingdom, Sweden, Chile and Italy) if they had ever experienced a miss-match between the packaging and the product, and how this affected their opinion of the product. Swedish Roamlers are noticeably more bothered than other participating countries when it comes to a packaging/product mismatch. 
How much does it bother Roamlers when the product differs from the packaging graphic?

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