Packaging is a critical aspect of e-commerce business and even more important in the competitive environment today. This is how the products that are displayed on these platforms are differentiated from the others. Products displayed on e-commerce platforms in Ghana are not just meant for the Ghanaian market. It is crucial for businesses to pay particular attention to packaging as they market products on e-commerce platforms.
E-commerce platforms are the most convenient means to gain international market access. In order to build a formidable e-commerce market, we have to carefully consider products that are marketed on these platforms. Besides, for these platforms to be competitive they need to ensure that packaging and content of products they display meet the required standards. This will further boost their credibility in the sector. It will convince customers to buy at first sight since they are unable to physically assess the products that have been displayed.
The owners of these platforms will have to select which segment of the market they want to serve – rich market, mass market, international market, local market or the African market. This will inform the choices they make regarding packaging. It will determine how products are showcased on their platforms and how products will be packaged during delivery. Products meant for the international market will have to meet the standards of the destination market.
Local businesses will have to make the all-important decision about the names that they choose for their products since putting it on an e-commerce platform means it will be accessible to the entire world. The choice of name for products becomes more important since words have different meaning in different languages. This is even more important when the business has an intention of selling in the international market. Packages with funny names will not attract customers and can cause businesses to lose their markets.
Businesses can use premium packaging for customers on different occasions – birthdays, anniversaries, and other very important events. Customers who are happy will share their experience on social media and this can influence new customer purchases.
The type of graphics that are used is very important as well. Graphics should be appealing to the customers. Online is a great opportunity to come into contact with a lot of people, but without good packaging product sales will not be as high as expected. From the Dotcom Distribution report, it is stated that the majority of respondents were more prone to share pictures of products on social media if they find it attractive. In this case business do not have to heavily invest in advertisement. Organic growth is assured.
The afore-mentioned impact of attractive packaging requires that information be properly indicated on the product package. People on the Internet cannot touch the product, so the best way to advise themselves is through the information provided. Businesses will have to painstakingly provide the necessary information needed on packages to guide the customer on how to use, recycle, and or how to properly dispose of products.
Packaging materials should be made in such a way that they can easily be recycled. This means that the brand stays with the customer for a long time and unconsciously becomes a source of advertisement. Some packages are so lovely that customers will admire them for some time before they open the product. In some cases, people make videos of it and post it on social media which is good for the business.
In transporting goods, since our roads are not good, some technical considerations should also be looked at. It is advised that crush testing and ink rub testing are performed to ensure that goods get to their destination intact. People are more attracted to products with robust packaging. The size and weight of the package should also be considered – oversize and heavy packaging would mean the business would have to pay more for goods to be transported.
A good product packaged poorly, will not receive the attention it deserves. This means, besides a good product, the packaging is equally important. In as much as we stress the need to properly package, we would have to understand the market we are targeting in order to properly package products for customers. A deceptive description could also destroy one’s market, since customers will shun and blacklist the product. The excitement generated from a well packaged product is priceless, so business should not underestimate its power.
Author: Kwabena Obiri Yeboah – (Member: Institute of ICT Professionals, Ghana)