The need for shipping materials has never been more prevalent than it is now, especially with the rise of e-commerce. Getting your products to consumers via mail or other delivery is a major benefit to small businesses, but it’s crucial they arrive in a condition that reflects your brand in a positive manner. There’s no telling what kind of damage your product may face as it gets shipped across the state lines, but there are more than a few things you can do to put the odds in your favor. Start by making sure you have the essential shipping materials every small business needs for its products.
The primary shipping container every small business needs to have at its disposal is the ordinary cardboard box. Of course, box size, shape, and type will vary, dependent on the products your small business sells. Another key aspect of shipping boxes that you need to pay attention to is how durable it is so you can ensure the package remains safe as it travels elsewhere. If you wanted to add some extra flair or branding to the box, you can also go with some custom labels.
A durable box isn’t the only thing small businesses need for product protection; cushioning materials are also necessary. There’s no shortage of effective cushioning materials you can choose from that can keep fragile products intact. Some great pieces of cushioning materials you should consider using include:
- Bubble wrap: This is probably the most common form of cushioning material you can use. Simply wrap it around the product that needs protection to keep it from getting damaged. Bubble wrap doesn’t take up too much space. Plus, bubble wrap is also fun to pop once it’s done serving its purpose!
- Styrofoam: The next most common cushioning material used to keep the integrity of a product in place is Styrofoam, which typically comes in planks that can be cut to size.
- Air pillows or bags: If you have extra space in your box, need to keep items separated, or want extra precaution, then an air pillow or bag will do the trick, though it is more cumbersome to use than other packing materials.
- Packing paper: If your product is small and not fragile, then packing paper might be the best option for you. You can either wrap a product with the packing paper, use crinkle paper, or both.
- Packing peanuts: While packing peanuts can be messy, it is also an easy and effective way to keep materials safe in a shipping box.
- Sealable bag: Using a sealable bag, such as a ziplock bag, is a simple way to add a little protection to nonfragile items. It also presents a great opportunity to promote your brand.
- Vermiculite: Another alternative you can choose for cushioning materials is a natural mineral called vermiculite, similar to packaging peanuts. This is a useful, cost-effective option to go with if you are trying to protect your items from any transit hazards that may come its way, thanks to its absorbent qualities. Vermiculite might not be a cushioning material you are familiar with, but it’s one of the safest ways to transport your package.
- Refrigerant gel packs: If you are shipping temperature-sensitive items, then a refrigerant gel pack is a must. While some businesses go with dry ice, this can be dangerous and gel packs can do the job just as well and are easier to handle.
As you can see, there are many options for the type of cushioning material to choose from, and what you need will vary based on the products your small business ships. Regardless of what you go with, it’s vital that you have cushioning material of some kind, so the package doesn’t arrive damaged.
A card within your package is a great way to tell your customer more about your company, offer deals, showcase other products, and communicate your gratitude. To boost the presentation, adding a wafer seal can make a striking impact. This addition will not only add visual interest, but it will also keep important information or subscription boxes unscathed.
The next essential shipping item every small business needs is proper packaging tape to seal the boxes. An easy mistake to make would be to use regular masking tape when you are packaging an item, but that will not be as durable as it needs to be. Packaging tape seals boxes well yet is also easy for the consumer to cut through or remove.
No package can be shipped without labels, and keeping them accessible can save you a lot of headaches when packing time comes. By having an address label that sticks right on your package, so you can easily sort through the different packages and make sure they arrive at the right destination on time.
Unfortunately, labels don’t just appear out of thin air, and while you could go to your local post office, a much more convenient option would be to get yourself a label printer. This way, you can print out the labels you need for each shipment and do it all in-house since you can purchase the labels online. However, you will want to make sure that they are certified not only so they are legitimate, but also so you can follow the logistics of the shipping process and receive important tracking notifications.
Another important factor that you need to keep in mind when you are shipping products is size. The cost of shipping a product will largely depend on the size and weight of the package. To calculate all of the costs accurately, you will want to have a shipping scale. By having a shipping scale, you can budget accordingly so there won’t be any surprises when it comes to how much it may cost. As you look for a shipping scale, keep in mind the products you sell and get the appropriate one.
Chromalabel is your one-stop destination for all the dots, tape, stickers, and labels that you need for shipping and sealing. We’ll ship you the materials that will help you with your shipping!