5 Common Product Packaging Mistakes – And How to Avoid Them

No one wants their product’s packaging posted online as a joke or horror story. Perhaps the packaging failed, allowing the product to be damaged in transit. The labels might be considered misleading, or the amount of packaging is criticized as wasteful.

Packaging mistakes

However, you can avoid becoming one of these examples of what not to do by educating yourself. Here are five common packaging mistakes and tips on how to avoid them.

Material Waste

Wasted material has become an issue for consumers. They may or may not pay more for products in minimalist packaging, but they’ll respect a brand that minimizes the packaging or uses recycled materials in the packaging. On the other hand, single servings of items in a massive package will become a public relations disaster.

In general, try not to waste space. This isn’t just a matter of environmental responsibility. Bigger packages take up more space during delivery, increasing logistical costs.

Where possible, not only make packaging that is eco-friendly but recyclable. You’ll get points with consumers if you tell them how to properly recycle the product and its packaging with little effort on their part. Around eighty percent of your customers will become more likely to buy from you again, too.

Manual Packing

Manual packaging is time-consuming and expensive. Services like The Packaging Lab, for instance, allow you to design packaging that can be filled by automated systems. This won’t just reduce labor costs but could speed up production rates. When you’re having the packaging redesigned, this is a great time to update the packaging design, whether you want to maximize freshness or rebrand the product.

Consumer Unfriendly Packaging

This is one of the most common complaints about customer packaging. A good rule of thumb is that it is too hard to open if someone needs scissors or a knife to do so. The solution here is to have the packaging testing in focused groups for how easy it is to open, in addition to getting the public’s opinion of how the packaging looks.

A Lack of Package Testing

Packaging that fails in some way will cause the customer to think badly of your brand. Packaging that breaks during transport and allows items to spoil is certainly a problem. Packaging that doesn’t protect items in shipment from damage will cause issues for customers and customer support, as well.

Can the package protect the product from pests? Will it remain attractive and legible sitting on a store shelf? This is why the packaging must be tested during the design and production process and problems corrected before the product is put on the shelves.

The Packaging Is Too Busy

Minimalism isn’t going to work on every package designed to promote the product. However, you can have too much going on. For example, too many descriptive words distract from the main message. A package that has too many images and logos on it is confusing, and people may opt for the simpler package that clearly provides what they want.

For example, if the product is labeled vegan, you don’t need to add that it is meat and dairy-free. If you want to have an image of the product, consider having a single image of it in use by the target customer instead of several generic images.


Your packaging should be understood as a bridge between your company and the customer. Its performance determines your long-term profitability. That’s why it’s important that you do everything you can to improve it.


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