Cost Efficient Custom Packaging Ideas

cost efficient packaging ideas

⭐️ 4 Cost Efficient Packaging Consideration

Material Optimization
Optimizing Designs
Additional Style Options

Are you looking for cheap custom boxes for your business that look great and are high quality enough to get the job done?

When it comes to marketing, compelling packaging that perfectly encapsulates your brand while still being cost-efficient is a must, regardless of your business’s size.

However, with so many options out there, you may have difficulty telling apart the overpriced packaging from the cost-effective boxes that are sufficient for your packaging needs. 

Example showing how theres many options in the cost effective packaging industry.
Source: Sporteluxe

You may be asking, what are the most cost-efficient packaging options available?

Here we aim to guide you through some cheaper packaging ideas for your business!

Material Optimization

When looking for packaging, finding the optimal material to use in the construction of your custom boxes is essential to your product’s success.

Not only will it boost your product presentation, but you’ll be able to optimize your brand identity through your packaging!

You may be thinking that purchasing the top quality material is the best bet to ensure your product will make it through the shipping process and to your customer safely.

Example of high quality packaging
Source: Behance

The reality is; opting for the highest quality materials can be quite costly and in turn can be damaging to your company in the long run.

The good news is that there is no need to opt for the highest quality materials to create functional and durable packaging for your brand.

Here are some examples of materials that you should seek when making packaging for your products.

Corrugated Fibre Board

Opting for cheaper materials for your products doesn’t always mean sacrificing the quality of your brand.

One of the most cost-effective materials to seek out when producing cheap boxes is corrugated fibreboard.

Corrugated fiberboard consists of fluted corrugated sheets sandwiched between strong paperboards for optimal durability. 

This material offers a stable cushion for any product that requires extra support and protection during long-distance shipping and handling.

Depending on how fragile or heavy your items are, corrugated material can be customized with regards to size and thickness to ensure your products are well accommodated.

Furthermore, corrugated packaging has the ability to keep moisture away from your products due to it’s thick corrugated texture, which is especially important for packaging food products that need to withstand longer shipping times. 

On top of being an inexpensive material to purchase, corrugated fibre board is also easy to manipulate and assemble into your desired shape.

This is beneficial because it reduces the required labour needed to tailor your packaging to your products, thus reducing not only your time, but your costs!

Folding Carton

Folding Carton is another excellent choice when looking for materials to build cost-effective boxes.

Want to opt for premium packaging but just don’t have the budget for it? Folding Carton is your answer!

Folding Carton refers to; printed paperboard that has been laminated, cut, then folded and glued together to create your ideal box.

This material is available in a variety of paperboard options and has the capability to offer the highest quality printing and finishing options to achieve the same feel as the premium packaging you are longing for.

This affordable box option is ubiquitous with packaging as a whole.

How ubiquitous? Well, The cereal you enjoyed this morning came in a folding carton box.

Folding Carton opens doors of opportunity for your products and brand, without breaking your bank account.

For example, looking to communicate an eco-friendly narrative to your customers? Go for Kraft Folding Carton!

Kraft Folding Carton is your cost-effective sustainable option. It is made from recycled materials, is 100% recyclable and is sure to get recognition from your eco-friendly shoppers.

Thanks to Folding Carton’s wide availability, its manufacturing costs are incredibly low. However this will not be reflected in your end product.

Through your endless printing and finishing options, your packaging will still maintain a high end feel that will boost your customer experience. 

Optimizing Designs

Your product’s packaging isn’t just a box for your product; it is now just as important as the product within it. 

Today, product packaging is about creating a memorable experience for your customer.

Example of a memorable experience, brand speaking directly to customers
Source: Behance

Strong packaging will help keep your name in your customer’s thoughts, which could lead to repeat sales and a loyal customer base. 

The artwork added to your packaging may initially seem like the most costly aspect of creating your custom cheap boxes, but we have provided some great options that won’t eat into your budget too much.

Through printing and finishing capabilities, your artwork designs will bring your packaging to life and offer your brand an optimal vessel of communication directly to your customers.

There are a variety of ways to communicate your brand identity and encapsulate your customers without eating into your budget.

Interior Printing

Interior printing or two-sided printing is a unique option that will keep your brand at the forefront of the entire unboxing experience, rather than just during the initial interaction.

Not only is interior printing a great way to save money, but you will also be cutting down on resources used when constructing your cheap boxes.

Interior printing allows your packaging to act as a direct vessel of communication to your customers.

Example of interior printing
Source: Ritual

Think of it this way; if you’re running an e-commerce business, your packaging will blend in with the rest of the packages waiting in the mail room to be collected. 

The unboxing experience is where you optimize the opportunity to make a lasting impression on your customers.

When your customers open your box, the interior will jump out at them and maybe even prompt them to share their experience online. In turn, gaining your brand and products more exposure.

Digital Printing

Digital printing is an easy way to add infinite customization to any product you ship at a low price.

Digital printing refers to the process of taking an image from a computer and printing it for use with your packages.

Suppose you want to provide your customer with some extra information about;

  • Package handling information 
  • Your company slogan
  • Brand Story

In that case, digital printing will work in your favor. 

It is not only cost effective, but saves you an immense amount of time on high quality prints in the production process of your packaging and offers a luxurious feel to your products. 

Foil Stamping

For that added touch of luxury for your cheap boxes, use foil stamping and give your product a touch of class at an affordable rate.

Foil stamping is a specialty printing process that uses heat, pressure, metal dies and foil film to add that extra bit of glitz and glam to your packaging.

This printing technique is especially effective for drawing attention to your brand name or logo. It adds to your competitive edge, by differentiating from your competitors on the shelves!

Example of Foil Stamping
Source: Johns Byrne

While foil stamping may seem like a complicated and costly process, it’s actually much more cost effective than you think.

If your packaging design is fairly simple and doesn’t require much printing, adding a foil stamp is a great way to make your packaging more appealing and engaging. 

Additional Style Options 

If you are a small to medium-size business or just like to pinch pennies, you may think this is an unnecessary step.

However, the most effective way to sell your products is by showcasing your brand and differentiating from the competition.

The bottom line is: generic packaging may seem like the best way to save money initially.

But how can you boost your sales if you don’t have that competitive edge you need to appeal to your customers?

Think of it this way; if you’re looking to purchase some dish soap, you’ll go for whichever one catches your eye first. Why? Because they all do the same thing.

Example of how important product differentiation is
Source: Style Caster

If you can’t differentiate from your competition, there’s a high chance your product won’t catch the attention of your customers in turn affecting your sales and profit.

While sticking with generic packaging might be the only choice for your business, there are simple ways you can make your generic packaging stand out with some customized materials.

Custom Sleeves

Custom sleeves look like a costly option that many businesses believe is out of their price range. However, this is not the case.

They are a great, affordable addition to your packaging, that may just give your product the boost it needs.

The benefit to custom sleeves goes beyond the added marketing and brand exposure. It also adds a layer of functionality to your packaging through offering your product extra sealing capabilities.

Custom sleeves on any packaging communicates that your brand pays attention to detail, which is what consumers thrive for; an authentic connection.

Example of Packaging Sleeve
Source: Remodelista

This addition to your cost-effective boxes, whether they are custom or generic, will give it an air of luxury and leave your customer feeling like they just got a steal on a high end product.

Stickers and Labels

Your packaging acts as a spokesperson for your brand and product. However, sometimes custom printing for each box is just out of your budget.  

Stickers and labels are one of the simplest ways to add that extra bit of character and shameless brand promotion to your packaging at a very cheap cost.

Stickers and labels are also a great way to communicate directly with your customers. Whether it’s a simple ‘thank you’ note, product instructions or more information on your brand, your customers will feel that your business is attempting to make an authentic connection with them.

While It’s true that custom stickers and labels are used on generic packaging in an attempt to differentiate from competitors, custom stickers and labels are also exceptionally effective when paired with custom packaging.

Example of Labels and Stickers
Source: The Dieline

Your company branding should be everywhere. So, if you are opting for cheap packaging, stickers and labels may be your best bet.

Luckily, the more stickers you buy, the cheaper they become, making them a prime choice for those looking to save on optimal product presentation.


You have picked out the material of your boxes and added some much-needed style; now, you have to make sure the product within will make it through the shipping journey.

Adding protection to your package is an essential step that, if skipped, could prevent repeat customers.

To put it simply: if a product you ordered came damaged , there is a good chance you wouldn’t buy from that company again.

The same goes for your products.

There are simple measures you can take to prevent product damage. One way is through custom packaging, and making sure your box leaves no room for your product to move around.

Furthermore, there are additional packaging items you can source to ensure your product is protected from any outside forces.

Tissue Paper and Paper Inserts

If you are shipping a larger or more breakable product, tissue paper and paper inserts are an excellent alternative to adding padding within your packaging. 

Example of Tissue Paper and branding
Source: Behance

This is especially effective for boxes containing more than one product.

You’re able to add padding between the products and/or display them in an appealing way to boost your unboxing experience. 

There are a few insert options to consider including;

Paperboard and Plastic Tray inserts are the most cost effective on this list.

Paperboard trays are very effective in offering your products extra support and protection and are great for displaying items such as cosmetics, candles and much more.

Plastic Tray inserts are effective in keeping your products separated within one vessel and are especially great for things like cookies, and baked goods.

Example of cookie packaging inserts
Source: Elle

Tissue paper can provide another opportunity to display your brand by having them match your brand’s color and design.

While tissue paper may seem as the least protective option for your products, it is actually very effective in protecting items that are particularly fragile like ceramics.

Paper/Plastic Gusset Bags

If you are shipping edible products or products that need a little extra protection within your packaging, gusset bags are probably already on your radar.

Gusset bags are invaluable for product protection especially in the food packaging industry.

These bags ensure your product doesn’t move around during shipping and can also provide another opportunity to add some more branded imagery to your packaging.

You can find gusset bags in both paper and plastic variety, both of which are inexpensive and valuable to building a brand narrative.

Consumers like easy access and functionality, and gusset bags offer exactly that. Packaging your items in bag style packaging automatically makes your product more user friendly from a customer perspective. 

They can purchase your product, and have it the moment they step out of the store without the hassle of opening an entire box.

Example of Gusset Bags
Source: Dribbble

Having eye-catching packaging shouldn’t break the bank. There are many packaging options out there that allow for customization and brand recognition that you can use to make cheaper boxes.

Take the time to look at your options before going ahead and assuming that the most expensive option is the best. Many cost-effective materials are more than enough to get the job done.

To summarize: a well-constructed package that displays your brand is affordable and could be the extra push that’s needed to bring your company to the next level!