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Success with Product Packaging as a Startup

October 28, 2014

As a startup business there are quite a few things that you really need to hit a homerun with. You already know that you have a good idea, but now you need to think of ways to get the brand seen and heard. In order for your startup to be a success you and your team need to find ways to stand out from the crowd.

A products branding and packaging should be considered very early on because they are extremely important and can literally make or break your startup. Starting early gives you the chance to try out different versions of your packaging and labeling. It also allows you the time you need to observe how people will react, if the packaging catches the hurried consumer’s eyes, and if your package is memorable.


The face of a product is the package, which is one of the determining factors that will come into play with sales. Some things that you should always remember when brainstorming ideas is that your product package should indicate the brands image and personality, it must be informative and precise, and the labels should show consumers the ease of use so they recognize how it can improve their lives. The brainstorming process is the perfect time to ask friends and family what they think your package should look like. This will give you some additional ideas from people who will be looking at it from a different angle than your team is.

A question to ask your team is how can you create a unique box opening experience?

Being different stands out and has been the key to many successful brands. How can you turn the most basic act of opening a package into a full and exciting experience? You could consider adding some extra surprise goodies in the package, or turning the box into a fun puzzle for them to open. Coming up with these ideas to stand out can give your startup a big boost when it is time to start selling.

Brainstorming ideas for your packaging can be one of the most trying times of a new startup. There are numerous things that need to be considered, including colors, fonts, layout, and the information presented. The color pallete that you decide on should be easy on the eyes and should be colors that invoke good feelings (psychological properties of colors).

The package should tell consumers what they should expect and why the product is the best option to make their life better. You need to make sure to not overdo the package or label, a surefire way to turn people away is having too much information which can make it difficult to read.

Market Research

Presentation is everything, so initial research after you have a few ideas can help you refine these thoughts. Look at some products that you would consider competition and see what stands out. What colors are they using? Is their message clear and simple? How do they tell the consumer why the product is significant?

Identifying all of these traits with a competitor’s product will facilitate you to make tweaks to your initial ideas. After determining what your toughest competition is doing, you can come up with ways to make your package even better. If you notice some key information about a similar product that your competitor is not telling people about on their labels make sure that you make it a prominent point of yours.

Package Design Mock-ups

Mock-ups of your package can be an indispensable tool for deciding on the final boxed product. When the product is first seen by the customers, the general impression should be a psychological fulfillment and a solution where your product is the answer. The mock-ups of your favorite ideas can give you a chance to test the package out on actual consumers.  A good way to test these packaging mock-ups out is to set up a table at local trade shows, farmers markets, and craft fairs, etc. This will give you better insight into what package design best resonates with buyers.

This is also a good chance to do some A/B testing on your package mock-ups. This works best by placing the product out for display with the different packaging and labeling options all right next to each other. Doing this you can see if one design is selling much better than the others, and this can help you decide on the final end product packaging. If one design is resonating more with the majority of consumers you will have an easy conclusion to reach.


After you have spent the time coming up with the ideas, created the design, and did some testing with mock-ups you will know how the product should be packaged. Now it is time to make the store shelf your product billboard. Consumer purchases are heavily swayed by packaging so when you get the package on the shelves people will give it a try if it truly stands out and conveys ease of use.

Don’t expect the product to fly off the shelves immediately, but it will start selling if it stands out. Once it starts selling and people like it, they will spread the word for you. They will tell their acquaintances and family, who in turn will continue passing around the news. This is how a brand grows and becomes a success.

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