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The Importance of Secondary Packaging in eCommerce

Primary, Secondary, and Tertiary Packaging Overview

The differences between primary, secondary, and tertiary packaging are significant, and identifying each depends on the specific product. To understand the rising importance of secondary packaging in eCommerce, let’s first break down the different types of packaging.

Primary packaging is in direct contact with the product. Examples include bottles and cans holding beverages, blister packs holding doses of over-the-counter medicine, wax paper pouches, or the plastic holding cereal inside its box.

Secondary packaging is the next layer outward and is used to group multiple product units, making them easier to handle. It is usually branded and used as a marketing piece. In the examples above, secondary packaging includes a 12-pack box of beverage cans, a small branded medicine box with drug facts, and a cereal box.

The final layer, tertiary packaging, protects a product during shipping. In a retail store, it includes the containers that new inventory arrives in. In e-commerce, it is the corrugated box that arrives at your door.

Why Secondary Packaging Is More Critical Than Ever

Here is why secondary packaging is important in eCommerce, and how to maximize its effects for greater cost efficiency and repeat sales.

It Creates a Positive Unboxing Experience

Custom secondary packaging leverages surface spaces to share valuable information about your products, create further brand recognition, and delight customers with a pleasant message and unboxing experience. As tertiary packaging may be unbranded or branded by shipping companies, secondary packaging can be a significant marketing opportunity and touchpoint with your at-home customers.

Ease of use should also be considered in your secondary packaging design to enhance unboxing. Certain features like perforations can make opening your package easier and more enjoyable for customers.

Social sharing is an important aspect of marketing for eCommerce brands, and the shareability of a product increases based on how good the unboxing experience is and how aesthetically pleasing the packaging is. Robust secondary packaging that is well-designed — both structurally and visually — and easy to open and use will give customers a high opinion of your brand, increasing the potential for repeat purchases and helping them become brand evangelists online and in-person.

It Protects Your Products

In traditional retail settings, secondary packaging does not need to be fit to ship. Now that e-commerce has risen in popularity, larger businesses are more often sending bulk items directly in their secondary packaging, increasing the need for durability in this layer.

In these cases, the importance of secondary packaging rests on its ability to protect your product as it travels. Up to 55% of customers will share a bad eCommerce experience with their friends and family, so it is essential not to let poor secondary packaging create frustrating product damage.

Mitigating damage throughout the shipping process with more structurally sound secondary packaging will result in happier customers and fewer replacement costs. It will also motivate brand loyalty among customers.

Trust Us With Your Secondary Packaging

Dusobox is fully committed to providing the highest quality packaging programs for our customers. Our G7 Master Facility Colorspace certification means you can expect vivid, consistent colors for your branded packaging. Our track record of delighting companies with optimized packaging solutions proves you can trust us to provide both eye-catching and structurally sound packaging products efficiently.

Reach out now to discuss the importance of secondary packaging for your brand and explore all of the options for your custom eCommerce packaging. 

You can also set up a meeting with our team to discuss your project requirements.