The packaging industry is expected to continue growing through the new year. In early October 2020, we reported the following major sourcing KPIs for packaging materials seeing a YoY increase vs. 2019:
- The number of sourcing sessions for packaging materials has grown by 25%
- The number of RFIs submitted directly to suppliers through Thomasnet.com grew 140%
- The number of supplier evaluations taking place on the Thomasnet.com company profiles of packaging material suppliers grew by 55%
Here are some ways to ensure your packaging company’s growth plans remain on track.
Have A Focus On The Environment
Recently, Amazon began putting a significant focus on sustainable packaging and moved over 100 million shipments from boxes to lightweight plastic mailers in 2017, boosting the U.S. flexible plastics industry. And in 2019, Amazon debuted a fully recyclable paper padded mailer. But some consumers and environmental activists are still concerned about packaging waste.
According to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, more than 67,000 tons of paper and paperboard were generated, but only a little over 45,000 tons were recycled in 2018.
Consumers and buyers are increasingly motivated to be more environmentally conscious. According to Barrons, a study by IBM found that two-thirds of North Americans prefer eco-friendly brands. With more people being purpose-driven, packaging manufacturers who make their products and solutions relevant to the end-consumer’s needs have a leg up in the competition.
Stay Current On The Market Presence
Likewise, understanding the highly competitive but changing market landscape helps you make better business decisions and drive product innovation. End-consumers and millennial buyers are driving the changes — in fact, millennials now make up the largest part of the workforce, and 73% of them are involved in B2B purchasing decisions.
Keeping up to date with what’s current and shaping the industry can better position your company to meet buyers’ needs.
See who’s sourcing for your packaging materials and services with our custom In-market Buyer Report.
Invest In A Dynamic Website Platform
When you introduce doubt into the minds of your prospects — with conflicting, outdated, or inconsistent information on your website — you allow your prospects to click away and turn to a competitor. According to a Thomas industrial buyers survey, 73% of buyers said they pay attention to a supplier’s website when deciding whether to submit RFIs.
Keep packaging product data up to date with a dynamic eCommerce platform and work with brand owners to create innovative packaging solutions consumers are looking for. Showcase those efforts on your website so buyers can see the full breadth of your offerings.
Seek Opportunities With Local Customers
Many manufacturers' business continuity remained intact when other businesses' supply chains were disrupted at the start of the COVID-19 pandemic. Thanks to local suppliers, manufacturers can benefit from lower freight costs, increased supply chain efficiency, and more accurate delivery times. Local suppliers also meet nearby customers’ needs better and compete against bigger suppliers in terms of scale.
Procurement Professionals Use Thomasnet.com To Source Packaging Materials. List Your Company So Local Buyers Can Contact You
Some circumstances can be unpredictable, but to ensure you minimize the effects of a disruption, have a thorough and complete understanding of every element of your supply chain. Make sure your team has a familiar understanding of the contingency plans set in place from your suppliers.
Create Customer Awareness Through Branding
Today’s B2B buyers prefer to evaluate suppliers anonymously online, then create a shortlist of potential partners before contacting them for further vetting. According to Corporate Visions, 74% of buyers choose the rep that was first to add value and insight.
With in-person trade shows at a standstill, manufacturers have shifted their marketing efforts online — and digital efforts are proven to show better ROI too. Make the best first impression with high-quality photos, industry-focused content, and videos on your website.
To make it easier for busy manufacturers, Thomas offers free video production services with the purchase of an advertising program. To showcase a video on your Thomasnet.com company profile and connect with more buyers online, click here to get started. According to Aberdeen Group, video marketing efforts can achieve a 54% increase in brand awareness and get 66% more annual qualified leads.
Build A Digital Future For Your Business
A study by Experian noted 60% of people have higher expectations of their digital experience than before COVID-19. Consumer buying habits directly carry over to B2B purchasing decisions too.
The keys to your packaging company’s growth are in the consumer and shifting to a more agile model to meet their needs. Invest in customer relationship management technology (CRM) to build a digital future for your business. Adopt digital transformation strategies to improve service delivery and business management. And shift to digital marketing efforts to ensure you stay connected with customers and prospects wherever they do business, whenever they need you.
Packaging companies not on the digital forefront yet can start small. Begin with a free company profile on Thomasnet.com, where more than one million B2B buyers, procurement managers, and engineers source for industrial products and services or request an In-market Buyer Report to see which companies are searching for your packaging products and services.
Editor's Note: If you're sourcing suppliers for COVID-19 items, click here for those manufacturers and distributors. If your industrial business can support the production of essential supplies to combat the COVID-19 outbreak, please complete this form to notify us of your availability and willingness to dedicate resources. Thomas is working with State and Federal Government offices to help mobilize manufacturers to deliver supplies and services.
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