All Eyes On Cardboard

custom printed corrugated boxesLet’s say you’re at the grocery store and you’re considering buying some oranges. They have them in the orange plastic mesh sacks, but your eye wanders to a new sight: a row of custom printed corrugated boxes, stacked high with glistening orange fruit. Sure, it might be lighter and cheaper to get the sack, but realistically, you’re going to get one of the corrugated display boxes. Why? Because people value presentation.

Today, we have grown weary of the novelty of endless consumption on demand, to the point where even the process of engaging with the material world has a tiresome aspect to it. Nobody wants to buy food and food alone at the grocery store. We want the sense of entering a world of sensory stimulation where we pay for the experience as well as the food itself. Retail packaging design has proven to be a huge financial draw, particularly at businesses like Trader Joe’s that focus on printed retail packaging that invites the eye and creates the sense of a narrative experience.

A recent study showed that consumer decision making is down to five seconds at the retail shelf. During that window of time, an item has only the most fleeting of chances to make an immediate positive impression, which will almost undoubtedly be a primarily visual impression. Nobody wants to fill up a plastic bag full of potatoes when they could buy an assemblage of fresh spuds wrapped in custom cardboard packaging with a designer logo.

This is why over 90% of all products in North America are delivered or transported in custom printed corrugated boxes at some point in their existences, and why over 70,000 people are employed in the custom corrugated packaging industry in the United States. But it’s not the only reason.

Sustainability and cost are two of the biggest draws of corrugated cardboard as a packaging material. Most cardboard packages and boxes contain as much as 46% recycled material, and 91% of container board in America was recycled in 2012. Custom printed corrugated boxes have been a preferred choice for over 100 years by shippers and retailers everywhere who favor the material for the low cost of packaging.

All in all, corrugated cardboard is a great material that has applications in retail displays, shipping, packaging and presentation.