Indeed, we are living through a revolution in the way consumers experience brands – the UK online grocery market set to reach £17.2bn by 2020, according to a 2015 report from IDG.
The rise of online
This is not tomorrow’s issue. Already, three out of ten British people buy their groceries online every month, with one in nine buying most of their groceries in this way. It is not only grocery that is experiencing this shift to online ordering and home delivery.
Across a wide range of sectors from entertainment to personal care to electronics to home furnishings to casual dining, brands are recognising the opportunity here.
Consumers have become more comfortable shopping online, while delivery innovations, from fully-automated 24-hour pick-up points to delivery services from the likes of Instacart and Uber, are all combining to accelerate the shift across many sectors towards a model of online ordering and home delivery.
And whilst online retailers like ASOS post double digit growth figures, high street stores like BHS slip into administration.
Lost in the Amazon
So, why is it that for most people the first thing they think of when they imagine a delivery arriving through the letterbox is a plain brown cardboard package?
The box might be smiling but is the consumer? Amazon’s smile was a lovely thought, and was the first glimmer of charismatic, brand first design in this market. It stopped there. Ever since then, Amazon has done little to make its customer smile. Indeed, its over-packaging has its own Twitter hashtag where dismayed customers share images of the worst examples.
This matters. If the first physical touch of the product is the package that falls through the letterbox, isn’t that the most important touch-point of all?
So, what can be done? Here are five examples of brands that are successfully innovating in this space. They are creating charismatic brands that get noticed and chosen, not just once for that first purchase, but again and again. They are creating new categories, new rules and new profits for themselves.
(1) Make an asset of the brown cardboard
Graze is the subscription healthy snacking brand for the mindless munching generation. It took the humble brown cardboard box and made a virtue of it. Essentially the delivery mechanism – the box with little “punnets” cut out of it – became the disruptive brand design asset.
This was so effective that when the brand came offline into WH Smiths and Boots it stayed in its distinctive and disruptive format. This helped it command a significant price premium against any other snacking brand, and take a sizeable chunk of the shelf to boot.
Continue reading on the next page for details on how packaging can become a media channel – even when you’re sleeping.
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