The Five Secrets of Great Packaging Design

Spunky packaging design by Fiverr Pro gefenbd.

You worked hard to get here – you had a vision for a product, managed to make it, and you’re ready to release it to the world. In this digital age, however, there’s one big thing that’s probably never been at the front of your mind – your product’s packaging design.

Since so much shopping happens online, it makes sense that this could have slipped your through the cracks. But packaging design is particularly crucial for new products. Since up to 95% of first-time products fail each year, the right packaging design can easily become your competitive edge.

The key? Catching your customer’s attention. Here are five secrets to great packaging designs.

1. Choose the right color.

Your packaging’s colors are critical – after all, up to 90% of impulse buying is based just on color. Thankfully, there are common associations that customers make with different colors. For example:

  • Red often symbolizes love or strong emotions.
  • Yellow often symbolizes energy, impulsivity, or happiness.
  • Orange often symbolizes fun, warmth, or determination.
  • Green often symbolizes health, nature, or money.
  • Blue often symbolizes calm, authority, or masculinity.
  • Purple often symbolizes creativity, royalty, or mystery.
  • Pink often symbolizes sweetness, flowers, or femininity.

2. Choose the right shape.

You may notice that packaging for “masculine” products frequently has a rectangular, box-like shape, while more “feminine” products are oftentimes curvier. That’s not a coincidence. Consider the hidden psychology behind your target market and create your packaging design accordingly.

While it’s important to stand out, it’s also crucial to keep in mind how your product may be displayed in a retail environment. For example, when the entrepreneur behind Beard Heads – hats that also keep somebody’s face warm with a fake beard – first began selling his product, he was displaying them on styrofoam bobble heads, which was amusing. But retailers told him this would be tough to reconstruct in a brick-and-mortar environment. So instead, he consulted some packaging designers and eventually his company put the beard heads on slim cardboard face inserts instead.

3. Make it easy to understand.

Yes, your customers will need to “get” what your product is quickly. But it’s even harsher than that. You have only a few seconds to make your product understandable to a first-time customer. Beyond using simple language, there’s another very important way to increase the likelihood someone will both comprehend what you’re selling and be more inclined to buy it, which brings us to the next tip …

4. Make some part of your packaging see-through.

There’s a lot of research demonstrating that if part of your packaging is transparent, it will encourage buying significantly. And when you think about it, that makes sense: If you aren’t familiar with a product, getting a sense of what it looks like will dramatically increase your trust that your purchase will satisfy your needs.

This Beehive Square is a great example. It gives just enough invisibility to create a “sneak peek” feel to the product. The invisible approach also falls in line with a modern design that’s minimalist and simple.

5. Encourage interactivity.

Anything that can increase the chances your customers will touch your product, the better. In addition to the see-through principle, it can also help to give your packaging a unique texture that makes potential buyers want to touch it. And for beauty or home products, like candles, try to make sure the packaging allows people to smell it without opening the packaging completely.

What do you think great packaging design entails? Let us know in the comments below!


Hannah Curran
Hannah Curran is Fiverr's Social Media and Content Manager. Originally from Connecticut, she lives in California and works out of our San Francisco office. Have an idea for the Fiverr blog? Connect with her on LinkedIn.