Packaging trends are rapidly evolving with each passing year. With the current trends in buying behavior of customers and a large number of options at their disposal, it is not surprising that companies in the packaging industry are expected to be more innovative than ever before. Broader themes of preservation, automation, aesthetics, sustainability, and trust are now at the forefront of packaging trends. From going light and flexible to healthier foods and clean labeling with packaging, it looks like the packaging industry is geared up to awe customers in 2018. Here are some of the key packaging trends that have made it to our list this year:
Less is more
Sustainable packaging is one of the key packaging trends that is gaining traction due to the rising need for cost efficiency and optimize packaging materials without compromising on the food and beverage products. Also, the focus on boosting conversion rates and development of better packaging equipment offers many options to reduce energy use in the packaging industry. Using fewer materials and less energy during packaging production without compromising on packaging integrity is slowly becoming popular among packaging companies.
Packaging and labeling companies are responding to the market’s demand for more customization and personalization and companies are now investing in the toolset to make this possible. 2017 was a tipping point in the fact that there were newer narrow web digital press installations for the first time ever. Digital print in flexible packaging and folding carton segments is expected to be one of the interesting packaging trends to watch out for this year.
Building brand experience
Online and offline shopping with door delivery is on the rise, hence the visual and tactile impacts inside a delivery can be a powerful selling point for brands. Logos, illustrations, and photos can either be printed on the protective packaging materials or directly on the shipping box. This can help deliver a brand experience that connects with consumers and further communicates how that brand value is enhancing their lives. By using custom packaging, companies can reinforce their mission and lifestyle, as well as the customer lifetime value. As companies discover more about their customers, both their shopping and unboxing experiences will become more personalized.
Transparency and clean labels
Food traceability and complete transparency have become more important than ever for consumers. This year, we can expect packaging designs that will enlighten consumers’ purchase decisions with concise, easy to understand design elements, and messages to help consumers focus on the product qualities. Aiming for packaging designs that enlighten consumers’ purchase decisions, brands will reject approaches that offer too much or too little as they can leave shoppers more confused than informed. Since modern consumers are highly informed, brands can face the risk of being rejected if consumers feel overloaded with information, leading to the questioning of provenance, transparency, and authenticity.
Flexible packaging remains one of the fastest growing packaging formats due to its premium branding, convenience, functionality, and sustainability. Companies in the packaging industry are excited about the opportunity to disrupt a category with a new package design that provides greater shelf appeal, is easy to store, easy to open and reseal, easy to carry, extends product life, and uses less material which provides shipping efficiency and optimizes e-commerce. Flexible packaging is one of the most popular packaging trends this year as it delivers compactness and durable barrier protection while maintaining the lowest possible carbon footprint.