Doorstep design: Move on from the shelf, these five brands make an impact upon delivery

(4) Own label, not no label

In 2010 Ocado launched its own range of own-label products. It was a precious opportunity for a supermarket brand that will never need to sell its own brand from a shelf to liberate its packaging design from the rules of the game.

It was an opportunity that Ocado seized. Freed from the need to look good in-store, it focused instead on looking good on the counter top and in the cupboard. The entire range looks distinctive and desirable.

Most importantly it elevated an own label brand from your guilty secret to table worthy. By 2013 own-label represented nearly £100m and delivered ten per cent of Ocado’s revenue – not bad in just three years.

(5) Make them feel it

Successful packaging should be more than good-looking; it should make you want to hold it. Think back to the last Apple product you unwrapped. It felt solid, carefully put together, every layer a mark of quality and attention to detail. Ricoh cameras are another good example of how tactile engagement can excite consumers and build brand loyalty.

With this new shift in how we experience brands there is an opportunity for those brands to play on our senses, breaking free from conventions, and putting a smile on the face of consumers.

It is worth noting that this need not to be expensive. We have already seen how consumers rail against excessive packaging. Less is more, and furthermore there is much that can be done with innovative material sourcing. The ASOS polythene bag is not expensive, yet it feels high quality.

Untapped opportunity

Those are just some of the ways that brands are innovating in this area. Many more will emerge in the months and years ahead, as organisations recognise that riding the online retail wave is about more than website optimisation.

For years, brands have invested energy and money into enticing and attracting shoppers with a charismatic on-shelf presence. And so many of those brands are allowing that charisma to dissipate in a morass of functional, lowest-cost brown card.

For those brands that get it, this is a major opportunity. What is more, it is mostly untapped. Returning to that IDG report, four in ten British grocery shoppers say they have never shopped online for their food and groceries, whilst 33 per cent of the British public claim to be lapsed online grocery shoppers.

That is millions upon millions of consumers. That is opportunity on a grand scale.

Lee Rolston is strategy director at jkr

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