Jeremy Lloyd
Jeremy Lloyd 28 April 2021

6 Golden Rules of Eye-Catching Packaging Design

A product’s packaging is as important as the item itself. Today’s crowded marketplace brings about a major challenge that begins even before a consumer gets to sample your wares – that of being noticed in the first place.

This is where packaging design comes into play. Get it right and your products make that vital first connection with potential customers. However, getting it wrong means that they probably won’t even notice that your brand exists.

With that in mind, let’s take a look at the 6 Golden Rules for packaging design that are crucial for creating that one-of-a-kind look that makes your products stand out and get noticed.

Rule #1: Keep it Clear and Simple

You have less than 3 seconds for a product to make an impression. In our media-rich world, we’re subjected to thousands of marketing messages every day, meaning most of us are now conditioned to tune them out, rather than pay attention to them. This makes it essential that your packaging is designed to clearly communicate the following:

  • Exactly what the product is

  • The brand and brand message

This crucial information is what will make a consumer pause and decide whether or not the product is of interest to them. Reams of information about a product’s benefits tend to be counter-productive as this can’t be read at a distance and often only serves to clutter. The best packaging designs instantly convey the product within and the company branding.

Rule #2: Be Honest

The image on the packaging should genuinely reflect what it holds. A little artistic expression is OK, but a deliberate misinterpretation will raise expectations that won’t be satisfied by the reality of the experience. These people don’t only become ex-customers, they spread the word as well. This inevitably leads to the brand being discredited and a possible reduction in future sales.

Rule #3: Be Original

The best packaging designs are memorable, represent the character of the brand and, most importantly, are individual. Standing out from the crowd means being different, even if it’s only possible in the smallest of ways. This can be done in a myriad of manners, including colour, style, design layout and typeface.

Rule #4: Think Big!

Today you may be designing for a single product. However, additional items will likely be added to the brand’s portfolio in the future. Make sure that any packaging design in use now can be scaled to take this into account. The creation of a systematic design that can be easily extended to encompass different products is essential for the continuity of a brand.

Rule #5: Shelf Appeal

Items are rarely displayed in isolation. When viewed on a shelf, multiple products grouped together make shapes and patterns. This is something that must be taken into account when designing packaging. It’s knowns as ‘shelf impact’ and can, if you get the design right, make a real difference in drawing the attention of browsers and attracting potential customers.

Rule #6: Usability

The usability aspect of packaging is often one of the last things designers think about. This is especially true for products that have been on the market for a long time. But is that shampoo bottle really the most practical of shapes?

What about the box that cradles a precious piece of jewellery? There’s always room for innovation when it comes to packaging. Just because it’s always been that way doesn’t mean that it can’t be improved on. Would a design tweak make the product easier to store or to use? A new slant on an old idea might be just what’s needed to instil the “wow-factor” into the packaging design.

The key to great packaging is to work with a professional design service. Not only will they be on point with the latest trends, but they also know what works and what doesn’t. The best providers have an eye for detail and the ability to translate a brand message into aesthetically pleasing visual design.

Consider packaging a branding priority with CrystalPack, one of Perth’s leading designers and producers of box and folding carton packaging. Offering bespoke, end-to-end service is their speciality, with some of the best designers in the business providing your brand with the unique elements necessary to go from idea to packaging production.

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