U.K.-based JD Sports—a leading retailer and distributor of branded sportswear—recently announced that profits have surged due to the rising athleisure trend of people wearing sportswear and trainers outside of the gym.

Retail-ready packaging plays a crucial role with brands competing with hundreds of others on the store shelves for that few seconds of the consumer’s attention and to catch them at their Zero Moment of Truth (ZMOT)—a term first coined by Google. This is where display packaging comes in.

However, things are slightly different when it comes to fashion and footwear. Typically, the product is not displayed in boxes on shelves, but it doesn’t mean that packaging is any less important for this industry. 


Packaging to enhance  the buying experience

Customers shopping for new shoes, trainers or other footwear tend to want to match their lifestyle to that brand, meaning that every second the customer interacts with that brand, whether that be on social media or in-store, the brand needs to be consistent.

With so many brands readily available, it’s the small details that make a big difference, and this often leads back to the packaging.

For footwear specifically, even the boxes that are stored in stock rooms need to be fully branded and well made to ensure that the customer is purchasing a quality product since it is most likely the customer’s final impression before taking the shoes off to the checkout. 


The importance of a  quality packaging supplier

While you want to work with a corrugated packaging company that will come up with innovative ideas, it is important to work with a supplier known for quality with custom printing capabilities.

There are several factors that need to be taken into account when producing a stand-out, retail-ready box. This means that the box not only has to have the obvious factors of looking great and feeling high-quality, but it also has to be the following: 

easy to identify

Use clear print to ensure the retail staff can easily and quickly identify the product.

easy to open

The box must be strong enough to withstand transit and be undamaged when it reaches the customer’s hand.

easy to merchandise

Retailers need adequate space to protect and store while doing inventory.

easy to recycle

All boxes should be easy enough to recycle but nice enough for the customer to want to keep.


The eco-conscious buyer

2019 is the year of eco-conscious buyer as more consumers are selecting products they know they can recycle. However, it goes further than that. Consumers want to know that brands are being environmentally responsible for sourcing the products that make up their shoes and the packaging that goes along with it.

This means brands are going to have to search for environmentally responsible suppliers that make the effort to reduce their carbon footprint through their own initiatives. This will put a great focus on packaging manufacturers to become FSC Certified for responsible forestry.

2019 is also going to be a big year for brand experience and overall quality. Younger consumers in particular don’t just want a transaction when they purchase a product. They want the purchase to be a brand experience. Both brands and manufacturers will need to work together closely to deliver that experience.

For more information, please visit belmontpackaging.co.uk.