3 Packaging “Cost-Cutting” Measures That Can Actually Increase Costs
January | 2023

Everyone’s had them: Those “great” spur-of-the-moment ideas that don’t pan out to be so great after all. 

When it comes to cost savings at your organization, it’s easy to slash first and ask questions later. But it’s important to weigh the pros and cons of change before you make a decision.

Packaging is one area that can seem pretty straightforward. A box is a box, right? 

Not so fast. While these changes might seem like they’re more cost-effective, they could actually end up costing you more in the long run. 

Ordering From a Catalog or Stock Website

A big packaging website or catalog might make ordering your items seem easy. After all, everything’s all in one place.

Not exactly. For one, everything is stock, so you’re at the mercy of whatever the site offers. That might mean ordering a size that’s too large for your needs and having to make up for it with excess void fill or other stopgaps. And ultimately, the packaging may not protect your product the way it should, causing damages and upset customers. 

It may also be more difficult to get your packaging products branded correctly. Finally, it’s almost certain that the customer service team won’t be local, and you’ll be one of many accounts. 

Bonus: Watch out for “freebies” and deals used to entice new customers. You might save a little on your initial purchase, but you’ll likely make up for it in freight costs and other add-ons. 

Related: Top packaging industry trends for 2023 >>

Trying to Do Everything In-House 

One of the first things many companies say when trying to cut costs is, “We’ll just do it ourselves.” The problem is, unless you have a dedicated packaging team – including a packaging engineer, procurement manager, and graphic designer – this often just causes more headaches. 

Working with a packaging professional can help in a variety of ways:

  • Assistance with branding and design
  • Help determining the size, substrate, and more for your product’s packaging
  • Customer service to help handle shipping and ordering

If you aren’t equipped to do that in-house, working with a packaging professional can be a better option.

Not Exploring New Substrate Options 

Many people mistakenly assume anything labeled “sustainable” also means “expensive,” so they stick with what they’ve been using. 

However, a little exploration can yield bigger savings and better performance. One example is plastic sheets vs. chipboard sheets. Chipboard is a sustainable option that actually requires less storage space than plastic and is typically far less expensive.

“Plastic pallet sheets are reusable, but many times they are one and done! Chipboard pallet sheets cost about 75 percent less than plastic,” said Chad Kravick, vice president at Badger Paperboard. 

If you’re working with an external packaging professional, they can also help guide you to the substrate that makes the most sense and fits into your budget. 

Save Money and Skip the Hassle With Badger 

With four locations across the country, Badger Paperboard is dedicated to providing you with fast quotes (and industry-best lead times), coast to coast. 

With decades of experience in the industry, Badger Paperboard delivers smart, creative solutions that work for your business. We also keep a wide variety of materials on hand and die-cut everything in-house, so we can custom-cut the right sheets, pads, or guards for any application.

Learn more about what Badger can do for you.