US-based packaging solutions provider MeadWestvaco (MWV) has released its second annual study, Packaging Matters, on the impacts of packaging in consumer shopping behaviour, brand loyalty and overall product satisfaction globally.
In order to understand the impact of packaging across the world, the company expanded its study in 2014 among 7,665 consumers to ten markets, including Brazil, China, Germany, India, Japan, Russia, South Africa, Turkey, the UK and the US.
The study reveals that packaging plays a major role in brick-and-mortar retail purchasing behaviours.
In the 'trial, repeat or switch' process, consumers try a new product and based on their experience, subsequently repeat that purchase, or switch to another brand to test another product.
Packaging Matters shows that 64% of consumers have tried new brands because the packaging caught their eye and 41% have purchased a product again because of the packaging, while 36% have switched to other brands after negative experiences with new packaging.
The study also examines the online shopping habits of global consumers, and reveals a host of behaviours that can be influenced by packaging.
MWV global creative vice president Steve Kazanjian said that packaging plays a vital role in building brand loyalty and encouraging repeat purchases.
"Brands that recognise how packaging can influence online shoppers have an opportunity to see a ripple effect as those consumers share their positive experience with others via product reviews or through their social networks," Kazanjian added.
According to the study, only 11% of global consumers are completely satisfied with current packaging.
The research highlights that the functional attributes of packaging, such as protecting the product from spilling and making the product easy to get out, are important attributes for consumers across all product categories.
It also reveals that consumers are most dissatisfied with the to-go packaging category, while fragrance packaging scores the highest for consumer satisfaction.
The study puts nations such as Germany, Japan, the UK and US in the developed packaging markets category; and Brazil, China, India, Russia, South Africa and Turkey in the developing packaging markets category, based on factors such as total GDP, purchasing power of the middle class, sophistication of the supply chain, and the prevalence of modern retailing.
The study reveals that packaging is more than twice as important to overall product satisfaction for consumers in developing packaging markets compared with those in developed packaging markets. It also shows that packaging has a greater influence on online shoppers in developing packaging markets compared with those in developed packaging markets.
Image: MWV's second annual study, 'Packaging Matters'. Photo courtesy of Business Wire.