Steps to Designing Packaging that Connects with Customers
A recent study of eye tracking on product packaging indicates that customers are spending fractions of seconds reading labels and making buying decisions. In many cases, as little as 1/20 of a second is spent on eyeing packaging.
We have also learned from recent studies that nutrition labels have little impact. Many of your most compelling nutrition facts, such as low sugar or vitamin content, is presented near the bottom of a nutrition table and therefore overlooked by customers. Given that busy customers are not reading nutrition and packaging narratives, getting packing design right is mission critical.
6 steps to follow when designing new product packaging:
- Determine where your product is in the category’s evolution. This will help determine the strategy and impact how much time the customers will spend learning about your product.
- Build a customer profile by gathering voluntary information from your customers and engaging in customers in active feedback. There is some basic information that you need such as, age, gender, ethnicity, income ranges, education levels and geographic location. Other questions will need to be customized based on what the product is.
- Determine what motivates buying preferences. If this is a new food category, many customers will read the labels and nutrition information, but only for fractions of seconds. If this is a mature category, expect customers to spend even less time reading packaging or nutrition information.
- Determine your top three buyer motivating factors and use them front-and-center on your packaging. Remember, you have fractions of a second to make an impression.
- Work with the best design firm you can find. Once you sort through the first four steps, you are way ahead of most companies trying to bring a product to market, especially if you have avoided your own biases. Now you need an amazing designer to translate those facts into a design that connects with customers and conveys the critical information in less than a second. Your designer speaks the language of the subconscious. Trust her. She is translating knowledge into a language you don’t speak.
- If you are a small to mid-sized company with a more limited product launch budget, work with a design firm to develop the most compelling packaging you can. Plan your go-to-market strategy and launch it. If done well, new packaging should give you a sales lift out of the gate.