Custom Retail Packaging
Not all consumer packaging materials are made equal. You want to wow your customers by creating secure yet stylish packaging designs that reveal quality merchandise — not have them open Pandora’s box.
When it comes to packaging your final products, businesses require durable, industry compliant yet attractive and affordable boxes, protective dunnage and more. A-Z Packaging fields many questions on how to determine the proper multi-materials and design approach for consumer packaging designs. We’ve put together a resource to help.
Explore this guide to custom retail packaging solutions to break down today’s leading packaging types, materials, benefits, and customizations — plus how A-Z can help wrap it all together.
A-Z Packaging for All Your Consumer Packaging Needs
A-Z Packaging aims to live up to its name — provide A to Z, end-to-end multi-material solutions and services for consumer and commercial goods.
With our nationwide network of packaging warehouses, we can design, fabricate and distribute retail and shelf-ready packaging all in-house, near your operations. In our mission to be a “one-stop” partner for all custom retail packaging boxes and bags, we offer:
- Customizable multi-material designs: A-Z Packaging carries a range of packaging substances to build and secure your goods. From classic corrugated cardboard and sturdy chipboard to industry-compliant plastic bags, liners, and other poly-based products, we take the time to identify the core materials best suited for your secure product transportation. Mix and match interior and exterior material components to maximize your custom packaging and get the complete packaging system you need.
- Packaging differentiation: E-commerce packaging, in particular, represents a critical touchpoint with the customer. This may be the first time a consumer physically experiences your business’ brand, as well as comes into contact with actual merchandise. Top-quality retail packaging outfitted with proper security and damage-mitigating interior dunnage ensures that first impression stands out for all the right reasons.
- Next-day delivery guarantee: Clients with warehoused product agreements receive our just-in-time, next-day delivery guarantee. Because of our nationwide warehousing network, we have all the packaging materials needed to fulfill client orders in-house. Packaging components are available 24 hours a day, seven days a week, 365 days a year at localized warehouse centers, ready at a moment’s notice for prompt delivery.
- Industry expertise: A-Z Packaging maintains clients in the automotive, manufacturing and food and beverage industry. We’re fluent in the product transportation and packaging regulations of these sectors, positioning us as a turn-key partner for anyone in these businesses. We also service a wide array of consumer goods, providing the same diligence, customization, and compliance proactively.
- ISO 9001:2015 Certification: ISO 9001 certificates are awarded to companies with proven consistent, high-quality deliverables across a rigid series of product, service and regulatory standards. A-Z Packaging underwent ISO 9001:2015 Certification to stand above the competition, promising only the best to our clients across any chosen packaging system.
- Charity-of-choice donations: A-Z Packaging is also committed to corporate social responsibility. We believe that even the smallest acts can make a significant impact. It’s why we offer donations to charities of our client’s choice, plus practice environmentally minded policies across our material sourcing, warehousing and distribution operations.
- Full-service packaging partnership: From assisting with custom packaging kit designs and producing prototypes to providing in-house assembly and just-in-time delivery in regions spanning the country, A-Z packaging is a true full-service packaging provider. Our processes incorporate superior engineering and best-of-class materials for high-quality package outputs. We’re continually learning and growing to deliver the best e-commerce and shelf-ready boxes we can, growing as you do.
E-Commerce Packaging Solutions
A-Z’s e-commerce packaging services provide a containment solution for online merchandisers shipping their goods and products straight to customers.
1. What Is E-Commerce Packaging?
E-commerce packaging is the process of designing and engineering containers specifically for goods bought online.
Often, when e-commerce merchandise arrives at the shipment address, it represents the first time a person or business physically interfaces with a brand. The look, quality, and durability of the packaging — as well as the condition of the shipped contents within — are critical to establishing brand trust.
E-commerce packaging focuses on a few core design principles:
- Exterior box or bag aesthetics, with a special focus on branding.
- Interior dunnage materials, merging form with branding function.
- Shipped item security, ensuring packaged goods arrive at their destinations damage-free.
- Overall box weight and dimensions, maximizing a business’ cost-to-ship calculations, such as by improving interior packaging space.
2. Why Is E-Commerce Packaging Different?
Because it often establishes the first physical, real-life touchpoint with consumers, e-commerce packaging receives its own retailing category.
What’s more, physical goods and products bought online will nearly always be shipped to a customer — not picked up in a store or transported by customers themselves. This means brands bear the weight of getting items to recipients in a timely yet damage-free manner, without breaks, dents, scratches, tears or product malfunctions.
3. E-Commerce Boxes and Packaging Services
A-Z Packaging adheres to strict quality-control practices to ensure an e-retailer’s goods arrive at customers’ doorsteps in perfect condition.
- Customized box or bag sizes, providing perfect-fit nestling for shipped goods.
- Protective interior fillers, from air bubble and foam wraps to corrugated cardboard partitions cushioning items in transit.
- Specialty wraps and tapes, properly securing the entire e-commerce container.
Retail-Ready Packaging Solutions
Retail packaging is a package design category A-Z Packaging is proud to offer to clients nationwide. Also known as shelf-ready packaging, this containment solution is ideal for retailers to receive and immediately display transported merchandise — all without removing items from its boxes.
1. What Is Retail Packaging?
Retail-ready packaging (RRP) refers to custom box kits designed and fabricated not only for safe merchandise transportation but for immediate display. Once they’ve reached their intended retail destination, boxes can be moved from the delivery truck right onto store shelves, floors or showrooms — no unpacking necessary.
2. What Are the Benefits of Retail-Ready Packages?
There are many advantages to using custom retail-ready packages:
- Convenience: Shelf-ready packaging simplifies front and back-store operations. It eliminates case cutting, merchandise unloading, and stockroom storage, streamlining these processes into an immediate store or showroom presentation.
- Time-savings: RRPs work exceptionally well for high-turnover merchandise. Kits are easily transferable from the back of a delivery truck to a full-blown display tray, reducing everything from itemization and storeroom organization planning to in-store stock times.
- Cost-savings: Implementing shelf-ready packaging is a cost-effective operational storing and shelving practice, particularly when it comes to variables like labor costs and stock handling.
- Environmentally conscious: Using shelf-ready packaging lowers boxing material usage and packaging waste, boosting the green branding of retailers that use it.
3. Shelf-Ready Packaging Services
A-Z Packaging can make and manufacture ISO 9001:2015 retail-ready packaging across many custom box kits:
- Corrugated kits: Corrugated shelf-ready packaging can transport large amounts of cargo yet contains individual slots to protect and secure goods, plus increase display organization.
- Multi-material kits: Multi-material kits are retail boxes made from two or more packaging materials, such as corrugated cardboard exteriors with interior foam dividers.
- Pallet box kits: Pallet box kits are made for easy pallet pick-up and transportation. They’re a retail-ready packaging solution ideal for wholesale retailers, grocery store produce and large retail merchandise too cumbersome to individually remove from its transportation boxes.
Types of Retail Packaging and Materials
Interested in retail packaging boxes, bags, trays and kits customized for your brand and convenient for your operations? A-Z Packaging produces traditional retail and shelf-ready packaging from the following materials.
Polyethylene (poly) products have been one of the most popular retail packaging materials for bags, sheets, and tubing. Its durability and easy-to-sanitize makeup mean a wide variety of industries can use this retail packaging bag type, on its own or as part of an internal component to multi-material kits.
- Poly bags: Polyethylene bags can are ideal for lightweight, individualized merchandise, sample products or otherwise small commercial products shipped to buyers or retailers. A-Z Packaging works with clients to customize bag fonts and lettering, graphics, sizes, thickness, tints and more.
- Poly sheets: The flexibility and strength of poly sheeting work as a protective covering over boxes during transportation. It can also be customized as a wrap layer within retail packaging boxes and bags themselves, separating merchandise from damaging dust, debris or moisture and preventing wear.
- Poly liners and covers: Similar to poly wrap sheets, polyethylene liners, and covers are incorporated within retail or shelf-ready packaging to keep merchandise in clean and compliant conditions, available in both interior and exterior wraps.
- Poly tubing: Poly tubing includes economically sized bags and wrapping for individual product parts. In particular, poly tubing works well when used to contain small tools, mechanical parts, jewelry, cosmetics, and other small household goods.
Cardboard is the go-to, retail-ready packaging material for custom box kits, trays, pads, shipping containers and much more. It’s a cost-effective and dynamic product with a range of printing, sizing, folding and locking modifications to ensure goods remain safe and sealed within.
Select from customizable cardboard-based retail packaging solutions such as:
- Corrugated cardboard: Corrugated cardboard is fashioned from thicker, slotted cardboard sheets. Its density gives it more strength than a traditional, single-layer cardboard box, supporting a range of retail merchandise at an affordable price. A-Z Packaging can create dozens of custom corrugated box configurations and styles using lock-and-fold box corrugated cardboard.
- Rigid cardboard: As its name suggests, rigid cardboard can be fabricated to be two to four times thicker than traditional corrugated cardboard. Its an ideal retail box material for exterior packages and merchandise requiring long-distance transportation. Note, however, that rigid cardboard cannot fold and collapse like other cardboard types.
- Die-cut cardboard: A-Z Packaging’s die-cut cardboard kits are designed for specialty merchandise with unique shapes or packaging needs. The tooled packaging system allows box interiors to accommodate protective dunnage, wedges, cut-outs and packing materials, assuring damage-free transportation for the goods and products held within.
- Specialty cardboard: Cardboard sheets can also come with a range of specialty treatments, such as rust-preventing finishes to water-resistant coats compliant with industry regulations.
Custom retail bags are an alternative to the rigid, angular cardboard and paperboard boxes so integral to packaged shipping. They afford the same durability, merchandise protection, and branding potential as boxes, yet save on shipment costs. For e-commerce retail, in particular, bags are an attractive way to mail orders directly to customers in branded packaging while experiencing significant cost-savings via reduced cost-to-ship budgets and increased interior packaging space.
Packaging bags can be fashioned from several materials:
- Plastic bags: Brands generally have three grades of poly-based bags to select from — low-density polyethylene (LDPE), high-density polyethylene (HDPE) and linear low-density polyethylene (LLDPE). Bag strengths and capacities vary based on poly density. For example, garment bags from dry cleaners tend to be LDPE grade, while traditional plastic grocery bags are HDPE. Your retail packaging partner should be able to assist in picking the right plastic bag density and blend for your products’ transportation needs.
- Paper bags: Paper-based retail packaging has grown in popularity in recent years, due primarily to brands’ interest in green and eco-friendly practices. Paper-based packaging is used to wrap products in-store as well as for interior dunnage cushioning select merchandise.
- Natural fibers: Many brands use natural fibers to create customizable and ultra-recognizable retail packaging, from cotton and canvas bags to jute, hemp or calico fabrics formed into bag-like totes.
Dunnage is the materials added to the interior of a box or bag to help ensure shipped goods remain stabilized, protected and well padded from warehouse to endpoint delivery. These cushioning components are a critical feature of retail packaging design and can be fabricated from numerous materials:
- Interior rigid cardboard: Interior rigid cardboard acts as a layering pad between packed merchandise. It can add structure to safely stack products, be placed within a box’s interior base or rim for additional weight support or simply help bolster the upright position of a boxed good.
- Die-cut supporters: Die-cut supporters are custom inserts placed within boxes to secure and stabilize products. A-Z packaging can create these box inserts using corrugated cardboard, plastic, and chipboard built to a product’s exact specs.
- Paper honeycomb: Paper honeycomb is an eco-friendly, plastic-free interior wrap for cushioning packaged goods and products. Made from a proprietary paper blend, honeycomb is an alternative to bubble or similar air-poly wraps attractive for eco-minded brands.
- Partition dividers: Cardboard, chipboard or plastic dividers create rows — or partitions — linearly separating boxed products, preventing them from coming into contact with one another during transportation.
- Custom dunnage: A-Z Packaging has worked with dozens of clients to design and manufacture custom dunnage materials, securing packaged items and ensuring merchandise arrives as-intended, in peak condition, to its final destination.
5. Shelf-Ready and Retail-Ready Packaging
Retail-ready, made-for-display packaging is a growing trend in retail packaging, with retailers looking to maximize shipping operations and budgets without sacrificing packaging aesthetics or quality.
A-Z Packaging creates custom box kits to satisfy this exact RRP niche. From designing a corrugated pallet-enhanced kit to filling its interior with the appropriate dunnage, then stamping all components with branded print and graphics, we don’t settle for today’s packaging standards. We help set new standards.
Find an E-Commerce and Retail Packaging Partner That Fits Your Brand — And Your Budget
Premium packaging services from A-Z Packaging ensures your merchandise gets the assembly, warehousing, and distribution it needs, exactly how it needs it. No cutting corners. No lowered expectations. Just quality custom packages for quality goods — and impressed customers.
Reach out to one of our packaging representatives today. We’d love to discuss services, as well as provide free quotes for packaging and shipping needs.