How to Measure Dimensions of a Box

Measuring the edge of a box

💡 Measuring the Dimensions of a Box
Measurements of a Box
The Three Dimensions of a Box
External Dimensions vs. Internal Dimensions

Measurements of a box

Measuring a box seems simple enough! However, for custom packaging these dimensions are crucial to your product’s safety!

Think of it this way; minimal room for movement in the box means minimal room for damage.

Box dimensions are a critical part of any package as the dimensions of a box have an impact on what materials are needed to be used, the cost of production, shipping, etc…

The three main dimensions by which boxes are measured include length, width, and depth. 

While this may seem like basic mathematics, measuring your dimensions with care requires some consideration and optimization.

Here we aim to lay out the most crucial considerations for measuring dimensions of your desired box!

The Three Dimensions of a Box

The first step to creating the perfect packaging is understanding how to measure a box’s dimensions accurately. 

So, what dimensions are needed exactly? 

To get started look at the opening of the box to measure the following dimensions; 

Length: The longest side when looking at the top of the box.

Width: The shorter side when looking at the top of the box.

Depth (Height): The side perpendicular to the length and width.

Make sure you measure the internal dimensions rather than the external dimensions! 

Why? This will become more clear as you progress further through this blog post!

A custom box with a tall box dimension.
photo: pakfactory

Keep in mind; while square boxes in theory should have equal sides, this is less likely to be true in packaging. 

So, make sure you measure each dimension accurately to ensure your packaging is up to par for your products! 

Note: In the case of a tall or upward-facing box, the depth will be the largest dimension while the length and width will be smaller.

For Long Boxes as seen below, the Depth and Width will be much smaller compared to the Length!

Ultimately, the product being packaged will determine what kind of box will have to be used based on your packaging specifications!

A custom box with a long box dimension.
photo: pakfactory


The volume will help you determine your shipping, warehousing and distribution processes more easily.

Furthermore, it will help you determine how well your product will fit into your desired packaging.

The volume plays a crucial role in the material optimization, cost optimization and structural engineering of your packaging!

So, be sure not to skip over this step!

Now that you have your basic dimensions it’s very easy to determine the volume of your box.

Simply multiply the three dimensions to get a volume measurement. 

Note: This measurement will be in cm cubed.

Not the best at mathematics? Use this convenient calculator to get exact volume measurements for your packaging.

External Dimensions vs Internal Dimensions

The distinction between the internal and external dimensions is important for obtaining packaging that fits your products perfectly. 

The Internal dimensions are much more accurate for both the manufacturer and your product!

Most manufacturers are very specific about the size of dimensions both internal and external and rightly so.

After all, no one wants their products to get damaged because of incorrect measurements.

Inner Dimension for Packaging

The measurements of boxes almost always correspond to the size of their inner dimensions.

This is important and makes it easier for manufacturers because the content of a box is always guaranteed to be a tight fit if the packaging is measured by its internal dimensions.

If a box is measured by its external dimensions, it could prove to be problematic as external dimensions always factor in the thickness of a box.

The Issue of Outer Dimension

The contents of a particular box may not fit snugly if the box has been measured by external dimensions.

This could feasibly damage particular products that need the packaging to be a tight fit!

This is why calculating the measurement of a box via its internal dimensions removes any shred of doubt.

This is especially important in the case of corrugated cardboard boxes.

We hope you have figured out how to measure a box properly through this blog post! 

Visit Pakfactory and speak to a packaging expert with regards to any questions regarding custom packaging and how it can benefit you and your business!

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