2023 Trends in E-commerce Packaging

2023 Trends in E-commerce Packaging

It’s easy to get overwhelmed as an online consumer, scrolling through endless pages of similar products. When numerous manufacturers make identical claims, we often choose the product with the most visually interesting design.

That’s why it’s imperative to stay ahead of e-commerce packaging trends. In this article, we’ll explain how to optimize e-commerce packaging so you can remain relevant and distinguish yourself from the competition.

E-commerce vs. Retail Packaging: Which is More Important?

Retail packaging is important to the success of any brand. But many companies neglect e-commerce packaging, even though online shopping represents a majority of sales.

Consider the most basic function of packaging: protecting merchandise during transit. Online purchases usually undergo various shipping processes, with many different modes of long-distance transportation. Make sure your e-commerce packaging is durable enough to keep products safe every step of the way.

Beyond protecting merchandise, e-commerce packaging also serves as a representation of your brand. From first consumer impressions to unboxing videos, packaging provides a tangible opportunity to communicate brand values, imagery, and attention to detail. Keep the entire shopping experience in mind so you can boost loyalty and reinforce your brand identity.

Differentiate yourself visually from competitors and create a mental link between your brand image and your high-quality products. Customers are more likely to reach for uniquely designed packaging both on the shelf and online. 

Once you’ve established a competitive edge over other brands, customers will support you with repeat purchases and word-of-mouth marketing. But the question remains: how exactly can you make your e-commerce packaging stand out from the rest?

How Can You Make Your E-commerce Packaging Stand Out?

If you want to take your e-commerce packaging to the next level, focus on two different methods: captivating graphics on the exterior of your packaging or an aesthetically appealing interior that lends itself to an unforgettable unboxing experience. In either case, high-quality materials will impart the impression that your product is exclusive and luxurious.

In general, graphics on the exterior of your packaging work well for retail settings. E-commerce packaging should focus on durability and an interior that enhances the unboxing experience. A printed interior is an interesting option, as it allows you to tell your brand story with inserts, unique logos, and color schemes. 

Ensure everything is visible as soon as customers open your e-commerce packaging so it shows up well on video. If there is any assembly required, make it simple and easy to read—otherwise, you may face a high return rate. The perfect e-commerce packaging will balance logistical shipping realities with an eye-catching design.

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8 2023 E-commerce Packaging Trends

    1. Sustainable Packaging: Consumers are demanding eco-friendly packaging solutions that avoid single-use plastics and prioritize recycled materials and reusable elements. Using sustainable materials is often cost-competitive with traditional packaging and can better exhibit your brand values

    2. Minimalist Design: Most successful e-commerce sellers are cutting down on clutter and producing clean, minimalist packaging. Don’t overcomplicate your packaging with excessive marketing copy. Instead, use sleek typography and take advantage of negative space to communicate your brand identity.

    3. Personalization and Customization: Make your loyal customers feel special with personalized branding that includes their names and custom messages. If you sell gifts, allow buyers to customize the packaging with messages that match the recipient.

    4. Interactive and Functional Packaging: Use interactive features like QR codes, hidden messages, or surprising opening mechanisms to engage customers and add an element of excitement to the unboxing process.

    5. Creative Unboxing Experiences: Similarly, adding small details and creating a memorable, share-worthy design will encourage customers to spread the word about your brand. Consider adding fun inserts like stickers or other free promotional products.

    6. Brand Storytelling: Utilize your packaging as a canvas for compelling brand storytelling. Every brand has a unique narrative that will endear its products to new customers. Achieve this effect with custom illustrations, thoughtful branding, and heartfelt letters from your founder or executive. These approaches will help you foster a strong connection with your fans by explaining your story and personality.

    7. Packaging for Subscription Services: If you are part of the growing subscription services trend, make sure to differentiate your packaging month to month so customers stay excited and look forward to each release. E-commerce packaging can match a monthly theme with cohesive branding, colors, and thoughtfully curated products.

    8. Subscription Boxes: Consider adding subscription boxes to your lineup and get a piece of the industry’s exponential growth. Tailor packaging to show up on social media, include freebies, and add feedback forms so you can personalize your design in real time. If you make customers feel special, they will reward you with regular, reliable income and brand loyalty.

Related Content: How to Choose the Right Packaging Company


Many companies fail to consider the importance of e-commerce packaging, resulting in lower online sales and fewer growth opportunities. From sustainable materials to creative unboxing experiences and minimalist design, there are numerous ways to attract repeat customers with compelling e-commerce packaging. 

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