Some packages are just fun to open. Regardless of the product inside, the experience of just opening the box is exciting and makes us feel special. We know brands that are masters at this. Apple. Ulta. Glossier. These companies have mastered the art of “the unboxing experience.”
“Unboxing” is how the buyer experiences taking the product out of the retail packaging. Unboxing can be mundane and functional or engage the senses and create an emotional connection between the consumer and the brand.
Whether you sell high-end electronics or specialty baked goods, you can create delightful, engaging unboxing experiences just like the big brands.
How do you create an engaging unboxing experience?
- Make it beautiful: Which would you rather open at Christmas? A gift wrapped in a brown paper bag? Or one wrapped with beautiful paper, crisply folded, with perfectly tied ribbons? Unboxing is much the same. This is why Crumbl Cookie packs its cookies into its iconic pink box—one that is both highly recognizable and “Instagrammable.” Even purchasing a single cookie feels like a luxurious experience.
- Make it unusual: Do something different to create surprise and delight. When shoppers open Ulta’s Hello Beautiful Deluxe Make-Up Pallet, the eyeshadow pans and brushes are artfully arranged, and the package is designed so that a flap printed with “Hello, Beautiful!” pops up. This makes the buyer feel special every time.
- Create an interesting structure: The physical structure of the packaging can enhance the unboxing experience, too. Consider unique opening mechanisms, well-placed compartments, and thoughtful detailing. Even something as simple as a fabric bow can create a sense of luxury.
- Tactile elements: Incorporating tactile elements, such as embossing, debossing, or textured finishes, adds a sensory dimension to the unboxing process. Apple is known for its luxurious soft-touch coating, making its boxes delightful to handle.
- Reveal moments: Create moments of anticipation and reveal. This can be achieved through nested boxes, layered packaging, or unveiling hidden messages, enhancing the overall excitement.
In the competitive retail landscape, the unboxing experience has become a powerful tool for brands to differentiate and build a memorable connection with consumers. By paying attention to aesthetics, materials, structural design, and sensory elements, you can create packaging that leaves a lasting and positive impression and makes customers repeatedly want to buy from you.