Why Footwear Brands Should Pay Attention to Product Packaging

packaging
In addition to shaping brand perception, a recent survey found that premium retail packaging for online orders also influences whether customers recommend a product.
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Consumers are more likely to recommend a product to friends if that product comes draped in premium packaging, says one recent study from e-commerce logistics and research firm Dotcom Distribution.

The new study, which surveyed 500 online shoppers, sought to shed light on how packaging impacts brand perception, why consumers share branded images on social media and how those images influence purchase decisions.

More than half of respondents (61 percent), when asked about their brand packaging expectations and their motivations for sharing branded images on social media, said premium packaging makes a brand “seem more upscale.”

The study honed in specifically on the e-commerce space and how shoppers react to receiving consumer goods, ordered online, in various packaging—the big takeaway being that brands might want to shed brown box packaging in favor of expressive, colorful packaging that creates a more memorable experience for shoppers.

Nearly half (49 percent) of the survey’s respondents indicated that premium packaging got them “more excited” about opening a package, while 40 percent said branded packaging made them more likely to recommend a product to friends. Further, the desire for premium packaging rises for luxury goods, according to the findings.

Regarding social media, the survey found that consumers shared images online to “show something off” (59 percent) and to recommend products to their family and friends (54 percent). That social sharing, the results suggest, encourages product purchases—61 percent of online shoppers said they were convinced to buy a product after looking up images and videos on social media.

So how does this data apply to the footwear space specifically?

With the rise of omnichannel marketing across the industry, an increasing number of shoe companies are now selling their wares online—meaning such products must be delivered to consumers in some form of packaging.

Finish Line Inc., Hibbett Sports Inc. and Dicks Sporting Goods Inc., for example, are among the footwear retailers that have recently upped their efforts in the e-commerce space. Individual brands, meanwhile, may have even more to lose or gain through packaging since their identity is closely connected to the presentation of their branded products.

Both brands and retailers, Dotcom Distribution says, may want to pay more attention to how their products ultimately land on consumers’ doorsteps. While shoppers are predominantly concerned with the quality of a product itself, interesting packaging may provide an extra nudge towards social sharing.