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Kite blog

Frustration-Free Packaging

By Jake Kirk • Monday 13th May 2013

We've all encountered packaging that can be frustrating to open, from lids that require the strength of a weightlifter to unscrew to sealed packs that appear to be secured with superglue. In this blog post we look at the worst offenders and attempts to develop frustration free alternatives.

Over the years we have seen the introduction of child proof caps on medicine bottles (which according to research up to 90% of adults struggle with too), tamper proof packs that have an extra seal and theft proof shelf packaging for use in retail environments. Not to mention countless packaged goods that are almost impossible to open without a knife or scissors - some sealed clamshell blister packs come to mind!

Although such packaging has clear benefits such as reducing lost stock, preventing accidents around the home and reducing breakages, consumers tell us that packaging is becoming increasingly more frustrating to open and that there is a need for simplistic designs.

Theft deterrent packaging, for example, has its place in high street stores, but when it comes to mail order or online shopping it is simply not required and merely adds inconvenience for the buyer. Not only are easy-to-open designs more customer friendly, they often use less packaging and are therefore more environmentally friendly!

A new way of packaging products

A major online retailer was in the news lately after having tried for two years to get manufacturers to adopt 'frustration-free packaging' that gets rid of plastic cases and bubble wrap - both of which were allegedly the biggest source of customer complaints. It has been trying to get more manufacturers to sign up to a new way of packaging products, by taking angry customer feedback regarding packaging directly to the powers that be.

A toothbrush manufacturer recently responded to such criticism by simplifying the way it packaged goods, and received great feedback from its customers as a result. This alone states a very good case for packaging in its simplistic form.

The hard part is always persuading companies to re-evaluate how they currently operate, convincing them that a shift in their approach to packaging goods will be worth their time and money. This is where Kite can help - our packaging experts can offer audits to companies who use large amounts of packing materials, advising them how they can reduce this to make it more user and environmentally friendly, as well as saving money and creating efficiencies in the process.

At Kite we try to keep our packaging designs as simple as possible, whilst still providing some more complex designs (such as our retention packaging) suitable for fragile items. We continue to look for new ways to make packaging simpler and more user friendly whilst still performing its key tasks: to protect and enclose your products.