How does e-commerce impact packaging materials and design?
Ensuring the safe transport of products while avoiding damage to packaging, accidental opening and leakage is our priority. While addressing these core requirements, our primary goal is also to reduce their environmental impact, which means that the packaging must be lightweight, mono-material, recyclable and easily shipped through e-commerce channels.
Glide and E-simplicity are examples of Aptar Beauty + Home e-commerce solutions using PP (polypropylene) material that, combined with other PE (polyethylene) polymers facilitate the recycling process. Over time, our upcoming innovations will include both full pack solutions and dispensing solutions that will be compatible with same-family material bottles from third parties so that it is even easier to recycle.
In terms of designing for e-commerce, today we have several dispensing solutions, which can be easily adapted through the addition of a safety clip or sleeves.
However, these additional components are short-term solutions to the e-commerce question and not necessary for products in brick-and-mortar stores.
The strategy now is to design and develop solutions with integrated e-commerce features. This includes meeting sustainability needs and guaranteeing a positive consumer experience with frustration free, on the go and convenient packaging.
We are investigating ways to make the overall design more compact and to optimize the amount of components, which is a key point for making products more likely to pass Amazon Ista 6 testing. For example, instead of having a protruded pump, an actuator may be a twist-lock pump which fits away inside the packaging, making the pack more compact, streamlined, robust and sustainable.
How have things evolved with your clients and or suppliers to accommodate these new requirements?
We anticipate working much more closely with partners like bottle suppliers and formulators, carton box producers and even e-tailers to find the best solutions to the demands of e-commerce and sustainability questions. We need close relationships to ensure the best outcomes for our clients.
How do you anticipate packaging standards evolving for e-tailers?
In my view, packaging requirements will evolve to take greater consideration for sustainability – recyclability, the size of shipping boxes – as well as other benefits like hygiene. Digitalization, and the need to track the product throughout the supply chain, is another pain point that customersand retailers are working on.
At Aptar Beauty + Home, we believe that with our omnichannel approach, the goal is to have one packaging solution that fits all distribution channels. We are working to find clever, smart solutions which are e-commerce capable and which respond to other customer needs, such as sustainability, safety, and hygiene.
If standards differ between regions, what does that mean for one-size-fits all omnichannel packaging?
In the end, the solution is to choose and follow existing packaging requirements. The correct approach right now is to choose the Amazon Ista 6 certification because it is a set of clearly designed benchmarks against which to measure. If standards evolve in the future, we will ensure that its solutions apply to any new requirements from other regions and or players.