Cost Effective Packaging Materials for Amazon FBA

Last week we talked about packaging design. This week we deep dive on some of the different materials available to use. 

Great packaging does not have to be expensive. You can make a fantastic looking box for between $0.40 to $1.00. 

In this article we cover the most common types of packaging used in products sold on Amazon.

Type 1 Polybag or PP Bag 

You will see the term polybag used a lot.

It’s simply a clear plastic bag to hold the product individually. If you go for this type of packaging, make sure to include holes for breathing and a warning about the dangers of suffocation on the bag.

Using a polybag will cost less than $0.01 for each product but it is also the cheapest-looking packaging. 

I don’t recommend going with just a ploy bag for your product. It may still get damaged and also your customer might have a negative experience of your product & brand. 

Type 2 Backing Card 

You can add a backing card to the top of your polybag, printed with your logo, and with some instructions on the back.

Again this will cost just a few cents per product. You might consider using this method or an insert card if your order quantity is small or you are just testing a product. 

You can include your logo, website, and key product information onto the backing card. This won’t provide any additional protection for the product – so only use this if it is very hard to damage the item you sell. 

Type 3 Insert Card

Using high quality paper, you can include a card inside the bag that contains your product.

Print your logo on the front with your company details and instructions on the back, and slip the card into your packaging. Even if you’re using a box you can still insert a card.

You can also include a coupon, warranty information, or details of your other products. A paper card shouldn’t cost you more than five cents to include with your product unless it is very large. 

Type 4 Paper Carton 

This gives you the highest impact for the least cost when choosing packaging. I think this is the best for most small to medium size products. 

A paper carton usually costs between $0.20-$0.50. You can print on the outside and the overall effect increases the perceived value of your product.

Compare images of products on Amazon with and without a box. Those with a box seem higher quality and can be sold at a premium price.

Because they can be machine made, the quality of paper cartons is usually quite high. It all comes down to the graphic design you put on the box. 

Type 5 Folded Box 

This is a rigid or foldable box where printed paper is wrapped around cardboard. It is usually hand made and wrapped. 

Because more labor is involved than in producing a paper carton, the cost of this type of box is usually $0.50 to $2.00 or more. Also the quality is harder to control because it’s made by hand.

Rigid gift boxes do feel more premium but the cost is only worth it if your product sells for 40 or more dollars. 

Type 6 Blister 

A blister pack is simply a clear packaging around your product.

Usually you have to create a custom tool to fit your product, so the minimum orders can be quite high from 3000 to 5000 pieces.  

Because of the custom element, usually there is a tooling fee to create a blister. They are popular with electronics to prevent them moving around in the box. 

Type 7 Special Packaging 

There are many kinds of special packaging that can increase the perceived value of your product and make it look unique, but often they require special design development and tooling making them expensive for most products.

Some popular alternative packaging types include a tin gift box, a cylinder tube, or special papers that have unique textures and finishes.

If your product sells for more than $50 then you can consider developing something special.  

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