As the eCommerce industry grows, there has been an increased focus on keeping costs down. 

Margins have always been tight in retail, and with logistics and shipping, eCommerce is similar. 

The type of packaging used to send items to customers can have a significant cost and significantly impact bottom lines for businesses. 

For eCommerce companies looking to get a positive return on customer acquisition costs, shipping might be the primary way to accomplish that. 

The right packaging needs to balance function with form. 

The packaging should be affordable and protective enough to keep the item from getting damaged while in transit while still providing the customer with a great experience when they receive the product.

It’s not always easy to strike that balance, but many types of packaging options should be considered for this. 

Cardboard boxes have primarily dominated the packaging industry and have been used across different types of products. 

example of product packaging box
Source: PakFactory

However, cardboard boxes are not always feasible depending on the type of product and may end up incurring more costs in the long run. 

For example, if the box is too big for the item, there is a risk of paying more in shipping costs while not being protective enough. 

Similarly, if the cardboard box is too small, there is a risk of damaging the item. 

However, mailer bags can offer a lot in this context and have become a strong packaging option in eCommerce as an alternative to cardboard boxes. 

Poly mailers are an economical yet protective form of packaging that can prove incredibly cost-efficient for eCommerce.

What are Mailer Bags?

So what exactly are poly mailers? 

Poly mailers are lightweight plastic bags sturdy enough to ship light items. 

Poly mailers are self-sealing and do not require additional packing materials such as tape or stickers. 

This type of packaging is best used for light but not fragile items. Because they take up less space in carriers and cargos compared to other box styles, they are easier to transport and cost less to ship – the lack of bulk works in their favor!

There are four different kinds of poly mailers available:

  • Regular poly mailers: Standard poly mailers with no bubble padding. The most lightweight and flexible option available is best suited for items such as apparel that don’t need lots of protection.
  • Bubble padded poly mailers: These are poly mailers with bubble wrap on the inside to provide extra cushioning to protect the items inside
  • Eco-friendly Paper mailers: Poly mailers are in the midst of evolution with new, eco-friendly options, such as biodegradable or recycled poly mailers.

Quick facts about poly mailers

  • Poly mailers are a very common packaging option and can easily be found in retail stores, post offices, and other stores where you purchase packaging.
  • If you are seeking eco-friendly poly mailers, many suppliers offer sustainable options. You can also approach packaging experts to understand different options and create custom-branded sustainable poly mailers.
  • Poly mailers are available in various custom shapes and sizes to accommodate your products in the most effective way possible. 
  • For items that do not fill up the entire bag and require additional protection, you can use additional paddings such as bubble wrap and packing peanuts. 

Eco-Friendly Mailer Bag Alternatives

As an eCommerce business, you know that packaging is essential to the success of your business. 

But many traditional mailers are made from non-eco-friendly materials like plastic that can take hundreds of years to decompose. 

Thankfully there are alternatives to traditional poly mailers that are both sustainable and cost-effective.

Compostable Mailers 

Compostable mailers are one of the most popular eco friendly alternatives to traditional poly mailers. 

Compostable mailers are made from 100% biodegradable and compostable materials like cornstarch, plant starch, and paper pulp. 

Not only do these materials break down quickly and easily, they also produce fewer emissions during production than traditional plastic materials. 

Additionally, compostable mailers require less energy to produce than their plastic counterparts, making them a more eco-friendly choice for your shipping needs.  

 Kraft Mailer Bags 

If you’re looking for something an eco-friendly yet sturdy mailer option, then kraft mailer bags may be the right option for you. 

Kraft paper bags are made from 100% all-natural kraft paper and provide superior durability compared to regular paper bags or envelopes. 

Source: PakFactory

They’re also lightweight which helps reduce shipping costs as well as environmental impacts since they require less energy to produce than heavier materials like plastic or metal. 

Plus they look great too!  

What Products are best for Mailers?

Many eCommerce brands have successfully switched to poly mailers for shipping their products to customers.

 Ideally, items packed in a poly mailer should be able to withstand rough handling (e.g., being loaded and unloaded on vehicles) and should not be fragile items that can be easily crushed. 

Some of the products that can be packed in a poly mailer include apparel such as shirts and legwear, phone cases, and bedding such as sheets and blankets. 

In addition, bubbled padded poly mailers can be used for items such as books and sturdy bottled products such as vitamins and supplements.

Benefits of Mailer Bags

There are many benefits of using poly mailers for a business, and it can significantly impact shipping costs and efficiency. 

Some of the benefits of using poly mailers include:

  1. Affordable: Poly mailers are more cost-effective than other box packaging solutions. Bulk shipping with poly mailers becomes more affordable, bulk costs can be as low as $0.25 per unit, so there is an opportunity to cut down on costs.
  1. Lightweight: Lightweight options such as poly mailers can greatly reduce shipping costs since they are small and easier to store and can improve packing efficiency to save you more time and money in the long run. Businesses of any size can save money using flexible and light packaging options such as poly mailers.
  1. Customizable: Poly mailers can fit the brand experience with easy customization options. Cardboard boxes aren’t the only option available if you are looking for sleek, branded packaging. Poly mailers can be branded and customized to ensure that customers keep your products in positive sentiments. Add logos to your poly mailer, or get them in brand colors and include other branding elements for a complete look. 
  1. Protective: Poly mailers offer a lot of protection for items compared to other packaging options. With features such as bubble padding and reinforced bottoms, poly mailers can be an effective packaging solution that keeps items safe while keeping shipping costs down.

Overall, mailer bags offer businesses a cost-effective solution for packaging and shipping products safely and securely. 

Their light weight makes them easy to store when not in use while their sleek design allows them to stand out among more traditional packaging options like cardboard boxes or paper envelopes. 

Plus, their durability ensures that items remain safe throughout transit while their environmentally friendly alternatives ensure that fewer resources will be wasted with each shipment made.

If you’re looking for a reliable way to package and ship your products without breaking the bank or harming the environment in the process, then mailer bags may just be the perfect solution!


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