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Common Packaging Mistakes Made by eCommerce Businesses

Debarpita Sen

Specialist - Content Marketing @ Shiprocket

May 11, 2021

5 min read

The eCommerce sector is increasing, and the growth is expected to double by the end of 2020. This significant jump in eCommerce sales is because of the coronavirus scare that urges people to stay at home, therefore insisting them to shop online. With such an increasing dependency on eCommerce, businesses now have to package their shipping items rather than display them in-store.

As an eCommerce seller, one must know how important packaging is for providing a supreme customer experience. However, quality packaging remains one of the most under-estimated elements for many businesses. It is essential to understand that quality packaging ensures the safe delivery of products and serves as your customer’s first impression of your business. A customer who receives damaged goods feels helpless as he has to go through the entire return process that takes up a lot of his time. 

To help you with ‘not’ committing any of the grave eCommerce packaging mistakes, we have compiled a list for you which you ‘should not’ do to grow your business exponentially-

Excess or Less Packaging

Did you know that nearly 50% of shoppers will switch to another store if they receive a damaged product? One of the significant reasons for damaged items is either excess packaging material or too little packaging material. For example, you are shipping items made from glass. If you use too much cushioning to cover the article, there are high chances of breaking the glass item inside. On the other hand, if you do not provide it with any amount of cushioning, the items inside will be damaged from the friction caused during transit. Therefore, it’s imperative to understand the right amount of packaging required for your products. 

eCommerce sellers must balance too much or too little packaging to ensure their product arrives undamaged. The trick is to avoid overspending on materials by using the right amount of cushion to protect your delicate product. 

Using Low-Quality Packaging Materials

This is another major mistake that eCommerce businesses commit. Impressive eCommerce packaging starts with suitable materials and, most importantly, the quality of these materials. For example, cardboard is often considered a cheap and disposable packaging material and is typically bought in bulk with little consideration for its quality. In reality, not all cardboard is the same. Some are manufactured from low-quality wood, meaning they crush easily under pressure.

The quality of supplementary packaging items such as tape, foam rollers, and mailers is also overlooked, resulting in inadequate protection for your items. Consequently, the risk of your products being damaged or ruined during shipping increases, leading to unhappy customers and a disappointing reflection of your customer care and brand.

To avoid using low-quality packaging, partner with a packaging solution like Shiprocket Packaging that puts quality at the forefront of its eCommerce packaging. Ask your packaging supplier about their quality control standards, such as whether they test their packaging under tests like the box crush test. By fostering a strong supplier relationship with a reputable packaging company, your business can maintain consistent results that will leave your customers enjoying your product rather than being disappointed about the box it came in.

Inappropriate Size Of Box

For businesses with a variety of goods, two standard box sizes simply won’t work. A small item will end up in the wrong size box, invariably using too much bubble wrap or another cushion. Your customer will judge you if this happens, likely wondering why you wasted so much box space for a small item. Also, the chances of the small thing experiencing too much movement inside the packaging are high, which increases the risk of breakage.

We don’t recommend you store a dozen different box sizes in your fulfillment center. But, planning shipping boxes around the products must be done to avoid damage-free product delivery.

Hard to Open Packages

Packing tape is just one way to seal an eCommerce shipment package. While tape may not always be the best package sealer, boxes glued shut are even harder to open, which can be frustrating to buyers and cause them to damage their purchases unintentionally. 

If you ship products such as apparel, consider shipping them in flyers or courier bags, as they are relatively easier to open. We understand that it’s a challenge to figure out how to ship safely. Still, a common packaging mistake is that businesses sometimes make their packages so challenging to open that the customer on the other end is left frustrated by the unboxing process.

Forgetting to Brand your Packaging

What’s a cake without icing? Branding packaging is a crucial way to spread reach, but a common packaging mistake is to skip customization of the shipping package. Even a simple custom label or branded packaging tape can extend your business’ story. Give thought to how your package can sell more products.

There are additional costs for custom-branding your shipping packages, but as brand recognition increases, there will be a corresponding jump in sales. Small touches like including a thank you card with a coupon are intelligent ways to keep the customer coming back for more.

Neglecting Return Packaging

Returns are an inevitable part of online selling. Avoid the mistake of packaging your products in ways that don’t facilitate easy returns. For example, shipping envelopes must be cut open and cannot be re-used cause of waste and unnecessary additional steps for you and your customers. Instead, consider shipping bags or envelopes perforated for easy opening but include an extra sealable “flap” for returned goods to be sent back in the same envelope quickly. If you can create a seamless customer experience, you will earn customer loyalty and future sales, making up for the losses.


Now that we have told you about the common packaging mistakes made by most eCommerce businesses be the one who learns from the mistakes. Avoid these ecommerce packaging mistakes to help your business’s profits grow in a cost-effective, customer-friendly, and sustainable way.

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