custom packaging Tag

11 Oct 2017 The Difference Between Boxes and Cartons

The Difference Between Boxes and Cartons

3 Color Folding Carton, Salazar Packaging, e-commerce packagingThe packaging industry is filled with a variety of terms; some are interchangeable, and some are not. There is also a lot of information available on the internet and not all of it is accurate so we are not surprised when we get inquiries for information on boxes when they really want is a carton and vice versa.

General guideline on paper packaging containers

Packaging containers typically come in variations of two distinct substrates:

Paperboard –  usually single ply, thin and most popular construction are folding cartons (aka chip board boxes) and rigid wall boxes. Your standard cereal box or FedEx envelope are great examples of paperboard material for packaging. We usually describe this as packaging that is NOT designed for shipping but intended for retail, display applications.

Corrugated boxes printed inside and out, Salazar Packaging, e-commerce packagingCorrugated board – this is the material that is usually thicker because it is multiple layers of paper with a fluted interior layer. It is designed to be a shipping container, and will hold up well whether you ship UPS, USPS, or FedEx. This board can be made into a wide variety of structural designs including RSC shipping boxes and mailer boxes.

Branding Your Corrugated and Paperboard Packaging

Both are available custom printed, though the type of printing that is available varies. Corrugated is primarily printed using a flexographic print process, directly to the board itself, limiting the number of colors and types of graphics that can be printed on it. Digital printing is becoming more common place and while digital printing is usually more expensive, it can make it possible to reproduce virtually any type of design you want.

Custom printing of paperboard is usually offset printed and also permits a wide range of graphics and color, though higher minimums may apply.

Application Specific Design      

There are no easy or standard answers and every application is a little different. Order volume also plays a major factor, since some board and printing options are available and affordable at 10,000 but perhaps not at 1,000.

Some sizes and designs require tooling (for example – die cut mailers) and others do not, such as RSC style shipping boxes. Different board grades and thicknesses are available for both paperboard and corrugated board.

If you are not sure which is the best material substrate for your project, please contact us at Salazar Packaging or call us at 630-551-1700. One of our experienced branded packaging advisors will be glad to assist you and answer any questions you may have.

Related posts:

https://salazarpackaging.com/e-commerce-and-subscription-packaging/

https://greenpackaginggroup.com/industry-experts/paperboard-folding-cartons-now-available-globe-guard-products-com-green-packaging-store/

https://salazarpackaging.com/printed-die-cut-corrugated-inserts-ecommerce-subscription-boxes/

https://salazarpackaging.com/sustainability-e-commerce-packaging/

 

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04 Sep 2017 Printed Die Cut Corrugated Inserts for Ecommerce and Subscription Boxes.

insert printed to contrast interior, Salazar Packaging, Printed Die Cut Corrugated Inserts for Ecommerce and Subscription Boxes

We are one of the largest printers of high end corrugated shipping containers in the country, leading the trends such as printing inside the box when most companies’ idea of branding is printing a logo on the outside. As part of the effort to create a unique and positive unboxing experience, we have also led in the design of product and application specific (custom) inserts to protect as well as present the products being shipped. (see first related post below)

We offer inserts of every type and design including molded foam, molded pulp, die cut paperboard and our favorite – die cut corrugated.

Corrugated inserts remain our most popular option because they are relatively low in cost, have low minimums (1,000 MOQ), tooling is reasonably priced, they are very versatile in terms of product display, and can be easily replaced as your products or combinations change. They have also become a customer favorite because they can be easily and inexpensively printed.

custom printed box and insert, Salazar packagingAre White and Kraft the best Options?

The lowest cost option is to not print an insert at all. Leaving it unprinted natural Kraft (brown) or paying a small upcharge for white is a great way to minimize cost and keeping your packaging simple. Whether unprinted is the best option for you depends on what you are going to do with the inside of the box and the color of the product itself. You never want to take attention away from the product and if the inside of the box is unprinted, you may want to go with a simple, unprinted white or Kraft (natural brown) insert as well.

Solid, flood coat colors on your inserts?

In other situations, a flood coat of a contrasting or complimentary color is a great option because it provides color at minimal cost and really dresses up the inside of the box. If there is no copy and it is a simple flood coat (edge to edge) of one color, you may not even need to purchase a print plate. That helps make color quite affordable and can easily be changed if necessary.

insert printed to match interior, Salazar PackagingCustom printed inserts

Keep in mind in most cases, the corrugated insert is die cut with cavities to hold the product so you may not have a large, unobstructed canvas to work with. This makes it an ideal place for a subtle, random repeat pattern such as a logo diagonally printed across the entire surface. One additional advantage of a random repeat pattern is that the same print plate can be used for a variety of different insert sizes and product combinations creating a very attractive, classy finish at minimal start-up cost.

While we are big fans of random repeat printing on inserts, in other situations you may have some specific, print registered copy you want printed such as a thank you, instructions, part number, etc.

Either way, corrugated inserts can help make your packaging unique and memorable in addition to creating a great presentation and keeping your product safe during transit.

Whether you are creating a new e-commerce box or giving an existing sub box a much-needed face lift, we know how to do it without adding a great deal of cost. In fact, compared to preprinted labels, they usually produce a net savings.

Please contact us at Salazar Packaging or call us at 630-551-1700 to discuss your project with one of our experienced branded packaging advisors. There is no cost and no obligation and you will be glad you did.

Related posts:

https://salazarpackaging.com/balancing-protection-presentation-e-commerce-subscription-boxes/

http://salazarpackaging.com/adding-inside-print-to-an-existing-subscription-or-e-commerce-box/

http://salazarpackaging.com/drives-e-commerce-subscription-box-redesign-rebranding/

http://www.greenpackaginggroup.com/industry-experts/custom-printed-and-branded-corrugated-boxes-achieve-great-designs-by-avoiding-common-mistakes/

 

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22 Aug 2017 Packaging for E-commerce Snacks, Candy and Treats

Packaging for Candy and NutsPackaging for E-commerce Snacks, Candy and Treats

One of the fastest growing areas of e-commerce is snacks, ranging from health-conscious options to some that are just delicious and do not claim any health benefit at all. In either case, they taste good and satisfy a need with a product that thanks to ecommerce and subscription programs, can be conveniently delivered to your mailbox.

What’s hot? E-Doughble! 

e-commerce packaging for candy and snacks, Salazar PackagingLiterally everything including nuts, candy, and pastries is selling. One of our most unusual and recent success stories is our friends at www.edoughble.com Check out their website to see the delicious flavors and box assortments they offer of their edible cookie dough products.

It was the variety of gift pack options that made their packaging a challenge. Different size containers, different counts, with and without flavor packs. You can see just a few of their most popular combinations from the attached photo.

We reviewed all of their products and combinations, and helped them create a packaging design that uses only two different size boxes and six different inserts to minimize the number of packaging SKU’s and reduce their overall packaging costs. Branding and efficiency was the goal, and the end results speak for themselves.

Packaging that Communicates, Literally from Soup to Nuts

e-commerce packaging for candy and snacks, Salazar PackagingThe products we have helped to create packaging for include various types of domestic and imported candy, nuts of every type and size, nutrition bars, and chocolate in every size and shape.

If you need to create a package design that is going to be protective as well as eye catching, please call us at 630-551-1700 or email us at Salazar Packaging. We know how to maximize the unboxing experience for your customers while minimizing the overall e-commerce and subscription packaging cost for you.

Related posts:

https://salazarpackaging.com/packaging-coffee-tea-subscription-boxes-e-commerce/

https://salazarpackaging.com/packaging-shipping-gifts/

http://salazarpackaging.com/design-options-e-commerce-subscription-boxes/

http://salazarpackaging.com/litho-labels-for-exceptionally-attractive-e-commerce-shipping-boxes/

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Assorted box sizes on hand

19 Jul 2017 How many different size e-commerce shipping containers do you really need?

Assorted box sizes on hand, eco-friendly packaging, e-commerce packaging, subscription packaging, How many different size e-commerce shipping containers do you really need?

They say variety is the spice of life but in packaging, it can hurt your bottom line if the wrong decision is made. The typical e-commerce shipper has two options:

  1. Utilize more, different sizes for an exact fit approach
  2. Minimize the number of different sizes and adopt a few or one size fits all approach

The benefits of using various size containers

The most obvious benefit is that the box better fits the product being shipped so there is less room for the product to move and additional/ancillary packaging such as void fill can be minimized or eliminated. The product can add strength to the packaging so you are less likely to experience crushing and exterior (outside/in) damage.

You are minimizing box size, which minimizes board weight and that has a positive effect on storage, as well as inbound and outbound shipping costs.  Customers are less likely to complain about excessive packaging which can be a key issue depending on your product and customer base.

The benefits of minimizing the number of shipping containers you use

There are really two advantages of using fewer sizes:

  1. Fewer packaging SKU’s to manage, purchase, and inventory
  2. Theoretically – a lower cost per unit due to increased purchasing quantity and lower price

There is no question that using fewer sizes can save time and space and you don’t have to worry about having the right size shipping container in stock. It is also true that purchasing (for example) 4,000 of one larger size container is going to cost less (per box) than purchasing 1,000 of that same size.

However, the key question is always going to be about order/purchase volume in relationship to size. Since order size discounts diminish (in terms of percentage) as the order size increases, at some point ordering several sizes MIGHT prove less expensive compared to a larger order of one (larger) size container. In other words, make no assumptions, let us help you do the math and determine what is really in your best interest.

Excessive, over sized packaging example, oversized packaging, e-commerce packaingSo, what is the best e-commerce packaging option for you?

Simply put, it comes down to usage volume. What does the order mix look like? Here is an example I often use when helping a customer review their options:

If the largest necessary size is only 12% of your volume, and you buy one size container, large enough to accommodate that and all your smaller product sizes, you are over packaging 88% of the time. That is probably not in your best interest because you are not likely to ever save enough money on the large box to make up for all the over packaging costs you are going to experience. Not to mention that your green minded customer may wonder why you are using an extra-large box to ship an extra small product.

Does that make sense? If not, one of our branded packaging advisors can quickly walk you through our process and help you determine what is really in your best interest. Yes, we sell “packaging that communicates” that looks great, but equally important is that it is eco-friendly, and at the lowest possible cost to purchase and use.

Contact us at Salazar Packaging or call us at 630-551-1700 for a free cost analysis of your specific application.

Related posts:

http://salazarpackaging.com/reducing-the-cost-of-shipping-e-commerce-and-subscription-boxes-via-usps/

http://www.greenpackaginggroup.com/industry-experts/seven-reasons-right-size-subscription-box/

http://salazarpackaging.com/drives-e-commerce-subscription-box-redesign-rebranding/

http://salazarpackaging.com/design-options-e-commerce-subscription-boxes/

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28 Jun 2017 Packaging for Coffee and Tea Subscription Boxes and E-Commerce

Packaging for Coffee and Tea Subscription Boxes and E-Commerce

Custom printed white and Kraft corrugated mailersWe have designed and produced shipping containers for a wide variety of beverages ranging from vitamin waters to liquor and everything in between, including coffee and tea. Coffee and tea are two of the most popular subscription programs because consumers are very brand conscious and loyal. Yet, most are also receptive to trying new flavors. This makes it an ideal situation for a creative supplier who is able and willing to deliver a variety of products to their door.

Primary versus secondary packaging

Primary packaging is the packaging that makes direct contact with the food/beverage product. It may be a folding paperboard carton, a pouch or bag, or even a K-cup container. Secondary packaging is the shipping container that is used to ship the primary containers in the required count. Examples: two, one pound bags or 24 K-cups.

It is this variety of primary containers sizes, shapes, and counts that makes shipping containers such a challenge. The greater the options offered to the customer or subscriber, the more variations there can be in secondary packaging.

Custom and semi-custom shipping containers

Corrugated Kraft coffee and tea mailersWe are adamant about right sizing a shipping box whenever possible. It saves space and money in many ways including shipping costs. (See right sizing related post below)

We can make an RSC style shipping box in any size and construction needed. If more of a presentation (die cut mailer) box is desired, we can utilize one of our over 100 different stock cutting die sizes to make a box that will be a great fit for the product and configuration you have in mind. Using an existing cutting die saves approximately $800 (onetime cost) and more importantly, eliminates delay. We can typically produce and ship a first-time order within two weeks after receiving your final, approved art work.

However, if you decide you want to ship a new container size, shape or configuration, we can make a fully custom box to your exact specifications. In most cases the minimum for a custom box is the same as the MOQ for a semi-custom shipping container – a low 1,000 boxes.

All branding is all custom!

Whether you go with an RSC box, a fully custom or a semi-custom die cut mailer box, the graphic design and finish is all yours. We do not offer “stock prints” like some companies do because they are never unique and your competitor can use the exact same design for their boxes. We specialize in making your boxes uniquely yours with your design, logo and text printed inside, outside, and in some cases on inserts and dividers.

We also don’t ask you to select a color from a handful of available colors and will offer you a wide assortment of GCMI colors as well as custom Pantone (PMS) colors. Most of our shipping containers are printed on 100% recyclable corrugated board with water based, ecofriendly inks.

If you don’t have a graphic artist, we can introduce you to one of the many we know who will do a great job for you. If you need a fulfillment operation, someone to pick and pack orders, we can set you up with that as well. This may be a new project for you but we have been doing this a long time and our experience will save you time and money.

Please contact us at Salazar Packaging or call us at 630-551-1700 to discuss your application and requirements. One of our branded packaging advisors will be glad to discuss your options with you to minimize your packaging costs and maximize the unboxing experience for your customers.

Related posts:

http://www.greenpackaginggroup.com/industry-experts/seven-reasons-right-size-subscription-box/

http://salazarpackaging.com/design-options-e-commerce-subscription-boxes/

https://salazarpackaging.com/packaging-eyewear-contacts/

https://salazarpackaging.com/packaging-shipping-gifts/

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22 Jun 2017 Packaging for Eyewear and Contacts

Warby-Parker, Salazar Packaging, subscription packaging, e-commerce packagingThis time of year, even us Midwesterners are breaking out the sunglasses, and of course, eye glasses have become as much a fashion statement as a necessity. For those in need of vision assistance who don’t like glasses, contact lenses are the preferred choice. Two things they all have in common is that they can all be purchased over the internet, and each require shipping containers.

One of our early branded packaging customers was Warby-Parker. They basically pioneered prescription glasses purchased on line with their HTO (Home Try On) boxes which we manufactured for them. Since then, we have created packaging for many manufacturers of glasses, sun glasses, and specialty contact lenses.

Balancing Protection and Presentation for Eyewear Shipping Containers

We all realize helping the product arrive undamaged is most important, but at the same time the packaging must look great, and it also must be economical. Keep in mind the average pair of glasses might already have multiple layers of packaging:

  1. The primary case that makes direct contact with the product and is likely to be kept and reused by the consumer. (We are NOT a supplier of this type of packaging)
  2. Possibly a rigid (paperboard) box that may or may not be kept and reused by the consumer. (We do design and create rigid wall boxes as well)
  3. The shipping container that is rarely reused or kept by the consumer. This could be a single or multiple like the Bon Look photo below. (we do supply this product)

This helps to understand why the shipping containers (the third item listed) should be effective and affordable because it is a very necessary but usually disposable layer of packaging.

Salazar Packaging, e-commerce, subscription packagingUnboxing Experience for Eyewear

With all this in mind, that all important unboxing experience (presentation) begins on the outer layer, usually a corrugated container. What most shippers don’t realize is that a great looking, custom size and custom printed box is only slightly more expensive than a plain, boring, oversized corrugated box. Not only can a larger (than necessary) box and void fill add cost, it can also add shipping weight and that can be additional cost as well.

Ideally the shipping container allows the product to arrive safely but not look too “industrial.” Reinforcing the brand and image is added value as well, for the shipper as well as the recipient. Here are a few ways you can enhance your box and turn it into more than a shipping container:Salazar Packaging, e-commerce packaging, subscription packaging, custom packaging

  • Custom print the exterior – show off that logo in a registered or very popular random repeat print
  • Custom Print the interior – since the shipping label dominates the exterior, the best place to make a great impression is on the inside of a small container
  • Color – standard white or Kraft as well as flood coats of any Pantone color you require
  • Unusual finishes – soft touch, high gloss, and everything in between is possible with varying minimums
  • Board variations, including triple white and thinner micro flute construction like E and F for strength without bulk

 

With volume (usually 1,000 boxes or more) just about anything is possible. So please contact us at Salazar Packaging or call us at 630-551-1700 to discuss your application. We have the experience to help you make the best possible impression on your customers.

Related posts:

http://salazarpackaging.com/design-options-e-commerce-subscription-boxes/

http://salazarpackaging.com/adding-inside-print-to-an-existing-subscription-or-e-commerce-box/

https://salazarpackaging.com/buyers-guide-rigid-boxes-e-commerce-subscription-applications/

https://greenpackaginggroup.com/industry-experts/reverse-prints-flood-coats-board-color-custom-branding-terms-simplified/

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15 Jun 2017 Packaging for Shipping Gifts

Packaging for Shipping Giftsgift packaging, award packaging, welcome kit packaging,

We tend to think of gift giving as a holiday thing or perhaps a special event such as an anniversary. The fact is that people and companies ship out a wide variety of gifts throughout the year as tokens of appreciation, an award for accomplishment or even just an intro or “welcome” kit. There are many reasons why you would want to ship a gift out to the recipient and even more reasons why the shipping container you use is important.

  1. A gift should appear thoughtful and personal. Not just an item thrown in a box filled with foam peanuts.
  2. A gift should arrive clean, orderly, and intact. Nothing ruins a moment or kills the WOW factor like a damaged gift.
  3. A gift should be brand consistent. A subtle reminder of where it came from is perfectly acceptable and expected.

Gift Packaging Application – Primary or Secondary? 

In some cases, we create over packaging that contains the already existing gift item packaging. The simple corrugated book fold shipper shown in the photo below provides the strength the internal (purple) box needs during the shipping cycle. Keep in mind most primary or initial packaging is NOT designed to ship individually via UPS, USPS or FedEx. The over shipper provides protection and eliminates the need to apply tape or labels directly in the gift, once again enhancing the unboxing experience.

Book fold shipper, Salazar PackagingIn other situations, like the Golub gift below, we eliminated most of the initial packaging and replaced the manufacturer’s lightweight paperboard box with a corrugated container that looks great and holds up in shipping. The result is a branded gift that ships with a totally customized, branded box for a first class look. When done correctly, a custom box will impress, protect, and add value to the recipient than the gift.customized packaging, gift packaging, welcome kit packaging

To discuss your specific project or needs with our people who make “packaging that communicates”, please contact us at Salazar Packaging or call us at 630-551-1700. We would love to help you create packaging that is as unforgettable as the gift you are giving.

 

Related posts:

https://greenpackaginggroup.com/industry-experts/not-early-order-holiday-packaging/

http://salazarpackaging.com/buyers-guide-rigid-boxes-e-commerce-subscription-applications/

http://salazarpackaging.com/design-options-e-commerce-subscription-boxes/

When Shipping Containers Matter

https://greenpackaginggroup.com/industry-experts/your-shipping-container-begins-the-wow-in-gift-giving/

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08 Jun 2017 Happy Birthday Inside Sustainable (and Branded) Packaging

Happy Birthday Inside Sustainable (and Branded) Packaging

Our blog on the web is turning nine years old next week and we would be remiss if we did not celebrate it. After all, it is that communication tool that we credit for much of our unprecedented growth and our amazing national profile. We are proud to now create eco-friendly, branded packaging for companies in just about every state, including Alaska and Hawaii. We firmly believe our sharing of knowledge and the transparency we demonstrate has set us apart from the many others in the packaging industry and Inside Sustainable Packaging plays a key role in that commitment.

A Blog That keeps up With the Times

Our web site and blog have had some face lifts and tweaks along the way and last year we even changed the name to Inside Sustainable and Branded Packaging to better reflect the content and what site visitors expect. Expanding the name to include branded packaging catered to the new audience we gained that was hungry for more information on custom printed products. For most of them, “green” or sustainability was a given and expected from their packaging suppliers. What they now needed was a company able to help them communicate with their customers. More than a “how to” or DIY blog, we take the time to present options and help our clients make informed decisions. As we often say, “no surprises” because transparency without directness is no bargain at all.

Hundreds of Blog Posts

There are few subjects (none that I can think of) that customers are interested in, that we have not covered. Topics have included paper tape versus plastic tape, the challenge of printing with white ink on brown corrugated board, the benefit of rigid boxes, weight/shipping cost reductions, and interior/protective packaging have all been covered from a variety of perspectives. The easy to use search box is designed to show every post that includes the search term(s) and don’t ignore the “related posts” at the end of each blog post. They will often lead you to additional, new details on the topic of interest.

Thank you!

I thank the many teammates, our branded packaging advisers and manufacturing partners who have contributed to the many posts you will find on our blog. However, I am especially grateful to the customers who have contacted us with their questions and comments. Your direction and suggestions are always welcome and you have helped shape this blog as much as anyone has. Thank you for your continued interest because it inspires and motivates us.
Please contact us at Salazar Packaging or call us at 630-551-1700 with any questions or topic suggestions.

Related posts:

The Unboxing Experience – Beyond Esthetics for E-commerce and Subscription Packaging

Salazar Packaging Celebrates 10Th Anniversary

Sustainability and E-commerce Packaging

How to Select a Packaging Supplier for your E-Commerce or Subscription Box Application

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01 May 2017 Four Most Common Myths About Custom Printed Packaging for E-commerce and Subscription Boxes

Salazar Packaging, packaging myths, e-commerce, subscription, custom printing, custom packagingFour Most Common Myths About Custom Printed Packaging for E-commerce and Subscription Boxes

We receive a lot of phone calls and emails from literally hundreds of people every month and there are a few questions and comments that are repeated time and time again. These four in particular are complete misconceptions, inaccurate, and worth debunking.

Custom printed packaging has huge minimums

I think this one has been intentionally perpetuated by sales people and companies that choose not to sell custom printed products. However, our unpadded custom printed paper mailer envelopes have a minimum that is typically in the hundreds. Even our flexographic printed corrugated boxes have a MOQ of 1,000 which is considered low in an industry where 2,000, 3,000 or even 5,000 is more the norm. “Huge” is a relative term, but our branded packaging advisors are trained to help you determine the best option for your specific application and volume.

I can’t afford custom printed packaging so I use labels

Anyone who believes this has never taken a close look at the cost of labels (in some cases, multiple labels) or factored in the cost of placing them manually on every package going out the door. We won’t even go into the esthetics or consistency since no two manually labeled packages will ever be exactly the same.

For example, by buying custom printed boxes in bulk and eliminating the label (s) being printed and applied, most people see their cost per box REDUCED, not increased. We can help you determine if you can be one of the many companies we know, who are able to increase profitability while decreasing their packaging costs.

Custom printing takes forever

That is what those catalog and website seller of unprinted, stock packaging want you to believe. The fact is that in most cases we ship a NEW, first time order for custom printed boxes within two weeks and a repeat order we can typically get out in one week. We have a variety of stock products on our www.GlobeGuardProducts.com store that can ship immediately, but adding your logo or brand is surprisingly quick and easy.

Custom printing is complicated and I don’t have a graphic artist on staff

Speaking of “easy,” even if this is your first effort at branded packaging, we make custom printing as easy as possible by connecting you to our people who have decades of experience. We know how to make even the most complicated logo or graphic design printable and affordable. While we are not graphic designers, we can recommend you to one who will help you create an eye-catching, low-cost design.

On a related note, if your volume has outgrown your startup or current facility, we can also suggest an outsource fulfillment company that will help you keep up with demand and allow you to focus on growing your business.

We have been creating great looking packaging for e-commerce and subscription boxes for ten years and we have a long list of business contacts and resources able to help you succeed. Let us know what you have in mind for branding or rebranding your packaging by calling us at 630-551-1700 or contact us at Salazar Packaging via email.

 Related posts:

https://salazarpackaging.com/select-packaging-supplier-e-commerce-subscription-box-application/

https://salazarpackaging.com/salazar-packaging-celebrates-10th-anniversary/

http://salazarpackaging.com/drives-e-commerce-subscription-box-redesign-rebranding/

https://salazarpackaging.com/design-options-e-commerce-subscription-boxes/

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21 Apr 2017 Buyer’s Guide for Mailer Envelopes for E-Commerce and Subscription Applications

mailing envelopes for e-commerceEven though we are best known for our beautifully printed and incredibly functional mailer boxes, we also custom print and brand a variety of mailer envelopes. As we often say, even a subscription “box” does not really have to be a box. So if you determine a mailer envelope will satisfy your shipping needs, the question becomes – which one?

There are many styles and combinations to choose from, most are good, but a few are bad. To some extent the decision is influenced by the following three factors:

  1. The amount of protection the product being shipped requires. Cushioned or non- cushioned?
  2. The type of graphic design and printing you want. How many ink colors?
  3. How many you are prepared to order? Every type has a different minimum.

Material Options for Mailer Envelopes

We can most easily divide mailer envelopes by the material used to make them.

Plastic mailer envelopes – like any form of plastic, it is available in a variety of compositions in terms of recycled content and recyclability. Not all films are created equally, yet most can be printed beautifully, but usually have a higher minimum. (See minimums blog post below)

mailer envelopesPaperboard mailer envelopes – they are often called rigid mailers or Stays Flat® mailers and are designed for products that you want to make sure do not fold or crease during shipment. They are available in a variety of board thicknesses and colors, and styles and are often used for documents, calendars, books, etc. They print up beautifully, have a relatively low minimum and are even available with windows if you want the product or ship-to address showing.

Paper mailer envelopes – also available in a variety of paper finishes and composition, some with heavy recycled content and others with almost 100% virgin paper content. Generally they are relatively inexpensive and have a much lower MOQ for custom printing compared to plastic. However, they are usually printed on flexographic equipment like corrugated boxes are, and have the same limitations of design, and colors. (See “flexo friendly” post below).

Cushioned or non-cushioned mailer envelopes

Does your product REALLY require protection and cushioning? It may seem like a silly question but one we are obligated to ask because cushioning adds multiple costs (shipping inbound, storage, shipping outbound, etc.) and in many cases, the protection is totally unnecessary. A great example is the number of people who ask for a “bubble mailer” to be used to ship out tee shirts or other soft goods.

When a product and application does require cushioning we usually suggest poly bubble lined mailers because they are lightweight and effective. The down side from a branding perspective is that they always have a high MOQ for custom printing.

Mailer envelopes, boxesIn need of an ecofriendly mailer envelope solution?  

It is in this area of cushioned mailer envelopes where we have to draw the distinction between the green and not so green options. There are two different types of padded or cushioned mailer envelopes we do NOT offer:

  1. Paper/poly laminates. Unlike poly mailers with poly lining that can be recycled with other plastic bags, envelopes that are paper on the outside but bubble lined inside will always end up in a landfill. Even though both materials used (poly and paper) are technically recyclable, they cannot be when they are laminated together and not able to be separated.
  2. Paper with shredded paper filling – often sold as a green solution, they are bulky and heavy which can add considerable shipping cost. They also have a high minimum for branding and if you have ever accidently ripped one, you understand why many customers do not like them. In my book they rank right behind foam packing peanuts on the list of packaging people love to hate.

Mailer envelope options can appear overwhelming especially when you add features such as easy open strips, peel and seal adhesives, gusseted versus flat, even “two-way” envelopes designed to ship back and forth. However, we have a branded packaging advisor standing by and eager to help you choose and maximize your branded packaging investment. Call us today at 630-551-1700 or contact us via email at www.SalazarPackaging.com.

Related posts:

https://salazarpackaging.com/minimum-custom-printed-packaging/

http://www.greenpackaginggroup.com/industry-experts/flexo-friendly-art-design-for-subscription-and-e-commerce-boxes/

https://salazarpackaging.com/buyers-guide-branded-e-commerce-packaging-clothing/

http://www.greenpackaginggroup.com/industry-experts/want-launch-subscription-box/

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