With the emergence of e-commerce as a sales channel, CPGs have questioned whether selling products through this channel will require a change in their retail package design, notes an article in Packaging World magazine. How will graphics designed to stand out on shelf translate to the digital world? If a package is made more functional for shipping, can it still convey the brand experience? Will all the work done to establish brand shapes, labels, etc., be diluted? Is it worth the cost to stock different SKUs for different channels?
So far, the changes have come primarily in the form of structural improvements to existing packages to provide greater product protection, eliminate product leakage, reduce the amount of dunnage needed to secure the product, or solve other shipping-related issues. One such example comes from The Honest Co., well-known for its baby, personal care, cleaning, vitamin, and other products made from safe ingredients. It all began with a new laundry product, explains Tien Nguyen, Senior Industrial Designer for Berlin Packaging’s Studio One Eleven inhouse design agency, which worked on the new product.
“Liking the basic structure of an existing Califia Farms’ almond milk bottle, The Honest Co. wanted to create a packaging solution for their new baby fabric softener,” Nguyen says. “When leaking challenges arose with their existing 70-oz detergent bottle, the project focus shifted to a redesign of the entire household laundry line for the burgeoning e-commerce environment.”
Studio One Eleven quickly recognized that the dosing-cap closure would play a critical role in reducing product leakage. The firm’s solution was to design a new polypropylene closure with a thick, high-density polyethylene foam liner that minimizes the assembly gap. Says Nguyen, “It is the thickness that distinguishes it from typical cap liners.”
The closure sits level with the bottle, marrying the two components. The cap is easily removable while maintaining an air-tight seal. To stop the “glugging” that occurred with the old spout, the new design has a longer cut-out spout that increases airflow and provides controlled pouring.
As for the bottle, the new design has a softer, rounder shoulder that improves top load, while its heavier weight improves drop resistance and creates a premium feel. An ergonomic handle allows for easy, one-handed gripping and pouring. The bottle is used for all of The Honest Co.’s laundry detergent and softener products, in 35-, 70-, and 100-oz sizes.
Read white paper on E-Commerce Packaging Insights & Innovation from Berlin Packaging.