We all know buying cheaper materials saves money for the time being, but later down the line it can come back to bite you. A better approach might be to cast your mind ahead to what will benefit your company in the long run. Take another look at your packaging process, and you might find there are much better, more sustainable alternatives to simply scrimping on the quality of materials.

  1. MINIMISE PACKAGING WASTE

More and more, people are recognising the excessive and wasteful nature of the packaging industry, and this perception inevitably affects company image and sales. But as this increasingly becomes a popular concern, there are now loads of solutions out there that help too.

Box On Demand reduces pack sizes to the specific dimensions of each product, which means less wasted cardboard and fewer vehicles needed to make deliveries. It’s a quick, cost-effective way to produce custom corrugated packaging in your own facility.

Using the right-sized box for your orders offers better protection, reducing the number of costly returns. It also reduces the need for expensive void fill, which can take up valuable space.

If you’re looking for something else, an automated void reduction system such as BoxSizer or the B+ machine also lets you reduce the range of cartons you need to keep in stock, as well as ridding the need for loads of unnecessary void fill. So you can stop wasting materials, keep your customers happy, and reduce your long-term costs.

  1. CHECK THE QUALITY OF YOUR MATERIALS

What’s the point in scrimping on the quality of your packaging only for it to break open, or have entire pallets rejected and returned to you?

That’s the danger of cheaper materials – they can often bring hidden costs including returns, losses, breakages, and customer complaints.

This is called the iceberg effect, as there are costs you can see, but also ones you might not be able to predict. The savings you’ll gain in providing better-quality packaging for items will far overshadow the costs of the materials used.

  1. PROVIDE A MORE CONSISTENT AND SECURE PALLET

What happens to your packages once they’ve left the warehouse can’t be an afterthought. Pallets, non-slip papers, stretch films, corner protection brackets and strapping are used to safely stabilise loading units during transport. An unsteady and inconsistent pallet load can cause products to be damaged or lost.

Pallet securing involves fixing and cushioning the goods, building a stable pallet structure, securing the connection between pallet and goods, and load securing on the load floor. This is where corner protection, interleaving paper and anti-slip paper come into play. You could even use Tiltwatch to teel you if a box is tilted over.

Stretch film is great for bonding your packages to the pallet securely, while strapping bands fix them onto the pallet and stretch wrappers help create consistent and secure wrapping of the load. You could also add load-restraint webbing to fix the goods by lashing or clamping, and anti-slip mats to minimise the chance of your boxes sliding about in transit.

All this can help you reduce damages and claims. It also helps reduce theft and prevent accidents and fines, helping you promote a more positive image of your company.

  1. OPTIMISE WAREHOUSE SPACE

Saving warehouse space can speed up your process and help you avoid clutter that contributes to costly damage and dangerous accidents. Not to mention the creeping rise of storage costs.

Solutions like self-erecting crash-lock boxes are easily stored and assembled on-demand, so they don’t take up much floor space.

You should also try to take this on-demand approach and apply it to how much packaging material you order for your warehouse. It’s becoming increasingly popular to order materials in smaller batches, as larger orders aren’t always necessary and can take up huge amounts of vital space. Your supplier may be able to offer you a stock holding service to help with this.

Another thing to consider is the storage of bulky materials such as pre-formed bubble wrap and void fill. Instead, you could choose to form these materials on-demand with air-cushioning systems and paper-based or inflatable void-fill systems.

The foam-in-bag protective packing system, for example, relies on the chemical reaction that takes place when two substances meet, causing them to expand inside the bag. These solutions get rid of the need to store loads of chunky void-fill solutions on site.

Each part of your warehouse taken up by storing unnecessary packaging materials costs you more money than you need to be spending. But by streamlining your packaging solutions you’ll increase efficiency, optimise space and reduce long-term costs. Learn more about optimising warehouse space here.