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Eco calendar    Dec 20, 2022

Types of packaging: a complete guide to protective mailers

The diversity of packaging has never been wider, anyone can find something to suit their needs. Join us today for a protective packaging overview!

All of us in logistics know how important packaging is - not only does it provide excellent protection for the contents of the package, but when well cared for, it can also delight the eyes and hearts of shoppers with beautiful branding, while at the same time renewing the entire customer experience.

However, I would still like to emphasize that the primary role of packaging is to protect the contents. This makes protective packaging, which is mainly associated with packaging material like bubble wrap, packing peanuts, protective foam packaging, kraft paper, and cardboard shipping boxes all the more important. There is, however, an attractively priced alternative to these shipping materials: protective mailers, which we will describe in detail in today's article!

Packaging materials: an alternative to bubble wrap & cardboard boxes

When we think of packaging, the first thing that usually comes to mind are stacks of cardboard boxes or "anti-stress" bubble wrap. However, this is just one of many options to choose from. Today I would like to present an alternative to this: protective mailers, also known as bubble mailers, padded mailers, or cushioned mailers.

As the name suggests, according to the dictionary definition, these are envelopes that have cushions or padding inside. This material has two functions: it is intended to provide protection and... to ensure that the envelope holds its shape no matter what you pack in it.

These qualities are especially important when sending small but delicate shipments such as jewelry or essential oils. You have the security of knowing that the sides of the packaging will not collapse around the parcel when the shippers cut the seals. Furthermore, the use of these protective mailers prevents the barcode, which must be read throughout the supply chain, from caving in on the carton.

Protective mailers: the best choice for retail packaging of small items

Protective mailers are very useful (and fairly inexpensive) kinds of protective packaging materials. This way of retail packaging is perfect for products from the following categories:

  • jewelry;
  • cosmetics;
  • vitamins and nutraceuticals;
  • accessories;
  • books.

The above categories seem obvious. When making less clear-cut decisions, it is worth focusing on resolving a few key factors and elements: product weight, size, fragility, and thickness.

The weight of the shipped product is key - the lighter, the better. For this reason, these boxes are ideal for a t-shirt or lipstick, but for a candle or a bottle of conditioner or other hair product, it is better to use corrugated boxes.

Another aspect worth considering is the size mentioned. Even if a product is lightweight, it does not mean that it will fit into this type of mailer. Take, for example, the small decorative cushions. For these, a typical poly mailer is much more suitable, which, although it has less protective properties, is ideal for transporting them.

The third aspect is to ask yourself whether the packaged item is flat enough. Let's be honest with ourselves - it is impossible to pack bulky items, such as sandals or ballerinas, in protective mailers. Shipper boxes or poly mailers are ideal for this purpose.

And last, but not least: as we all know, such mailers are perfect for shipping delicate items. However, they are made to assure basic protection; if you send extremely fragile items, such as porcelain boxes or glass figurines, they may become a damaged product in some way. For this reason, it is better to opt for a different type of protection and to choose something from the various types of extra protection packing which is considerably safer - e.g. corrugated boxes additionally filled with void fill.

An environmentally friendly solution for eCommerce businesses

There are different forms of protective mailer material; however, it is worth opting for a product line that is within the eco and sustainability trend. The matter of environmental impact is particularly important, not only because of the obvious need to care for the planet, but also because of the needs of the buyers themselves - as numerous studies carried out by market institutions have shown, the majority of buyers (especially of the younger generations) are not only more willing to buy eco solutions, but also... are prepared to pay more for fulfillment statsWe have written about the details of eco-packaging more than once - just take a look at this blog post about environmentally friendly packing. However, you do not have to focus solely on the use of recycled paper, packing paper, tissue paper, or paper envelopes made from recyclable paper. For ecommerce packaging, you can decide on some specialist packaging and use mailers for your shipping supplies.

What is more, even in the field of smart eco-protective mailers, there is definitely a lot to choose from. You can opt for hey types of paper protective packaging: envelopes made of exterior paper and poly cushioning, recycled mailers, or mailers made of 100% biodegradable materials.

Importantly, even mailers that are truly environmentally friendly (when made from recycled material)are at the same time... highly customizable. By taking care of the branding, you give your customers a premium feel and provide an outstanding customer experience, while avoiding the higher costs typical of other types of packing. What's more, the good manufacturers of such packaging are real masters at making beautiful and useful mailers - if you don't take our word for it, take a look at the example of one of our business partners, Packhelp, and their bio mailer:

green fulfilment parcel: eco bio mailesPrimary packaging perfect small product packing: protect fragile items while taking care of sustainability

Product packaging is an extremely broad topic. There are many key types of materials and packaging, and this multitude can make the ecommerce industry really dizzy: should I bet on boxes? How can I guarantee the security of shipments during shipping? How do we make sure that the parcels remain eco-friendly? Which boxes are easily accessible in warehouses and do not take up a lot of space (and at the same time are not difficult to assemble, but are a cost-effective option)?

Ecommerce packaging, as well as sustainable packaging, isn't an easy topic. As many retail stores sellers and customers - as many packaging needs. However, the type of protective packaging described in today's post is ideal for shipping fragile and small items. It doesn't take up much space in the shipping process, it can be customised, the quality-to-price ratio is great - and what's more, it holds up well to any shipping label, which is then easy to read.

Ship products in style: select small packages of eco-friendly protective mailers, specifically designed for shipping fragile items. There are so many forms of them to choose your perfect one: also remember that, since most of them have a long shelf life, customers and the environment will be grateful to you for this choice.

Head of Marketing at Linker Cloud who gained experience in the insurance and tech industry. She also has a marketing agency perspective.

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