Packaging design trends you should look out for in 2019

by | Nov 26, 2018 | Branding with impact

Consumers tastes, expectations and trends change and evolve constantly. So what packaging design trends should you be looking out for in 2019 ?

Knowing and understanding what your target consumer knows is a critical key to knowing which packaging design trends you need to be looking out for in 2019.

The famous author of Breakthrough Advertising, Eugene Schwartz, once said: “Knowing what your prospects knows in advance of a sales pitch is just as important as knowing who he is or what he wants.

Armed with this information you will be able to position and tailor your branding, product packing and message to in a way that most appeals to them.

1. Packaging design trend to look out for: Simple typography

Today’s supermarket cluttered shelves are choked full of “me-too” packaging designs. Busy, busy packs filled with with in vogue typography are loosing their ability to capture attention in favour of clean and spartan designs.

The above all said, those packs presented with plain simple and interesting typography, are still growing and becoming increasingly popular.

Over the top packaging design with multiple call outs and promo summons’s are very pas’e especially in a world where consumers are more knowledgeable and informed ad care about long term sustainability.

The more the millennial generation increasingly becomes the main paying consumer group, the more packaging design’s role as a “silent salesperson” becomes more crucial at the shelf. This is especially important in light of the increasing popularity of social media sharing.

2. Packaging design trend to look out for more “see through”packs.

According to a ZNET article back in August, 9 out of 10 consumers will stop purchasing from brands that lack transparency. The research quoted explains the clear tie between transparent business communications on social media and consumer spending.

This finding also translates across consumer channels into the supermarket.

In May this year, eported in an article for, after the 2018 Innovation Series: Transparency is the new normal: where the research profiled “The New Consumer”.

In her article Weinswig, details how “technology is changing how consumers shop, and the brands that “get it” are capitalising on consumers’ desire for transparency, authenticity, scarcity, urgency and craftsmanship” This highlights the fact there is a straight line between transparent business communications on social media and consumer spending.

With this in mind, transparent food packaging, packaging that is see-through where the consumers can view the actual product rather than be taken in by the “food porn” packaging just the packaging, is becoming increasing in demand.

When consumers feel like they can gauge the quality and freshness of the ingredients of the package the more they are willing to give it a try.

Which would you rather buy? (assuming price and ingredients are relatively similar)

In 2019 there will be an increased demand for transparent barrier films replacing traditional aluminium foils. These transparent barrier films offer the consumer a sneak peek into the product they are looking at purchasing.

3. Packaging design trend to look out for: It’s all about CX!

CX (Customer Experience) refers to a customer’s experience with a company or brand, across all touch-points.

A touchpoint is any way by which a consumer interacts with a brand. Whether this be when purchasing or using the product or by seeing commercials featuring the brand/product.

Consumer experience has become the all purpose catch cry for marketers across all marketing disciplines.

Today marketers see product consumption as being more about the experience than the actual product itself.

Just consider the whole “unboxing” of the product and how that impacts the product and brands shareability.

Today’s experienced Brand Marketers and packaging designers will often use a customer journey map (the different customers’ touch-points as seen from the customers’ points of view) to gain a comprehensive idea of a customer’s experience with the brand and the product.

CX design focuses on creating an optimal experience for customers at all such touch-points. To help Brand Marketers to think strategically through the CX we have created the The Nescience Loop© framework.

Knowing what your audience knows

The Nescience Loop©

The Nescience Loop© framework can help brand managers and marketers “Know what their target audience knows.”

In a blog post written by Jam&Co earlier this year “One of the most costly mistakes a Brand Manager can make” we looked at the Nescience Loop©. This loop is  is the unconscious buying framework that consumers go through when they are shopping.

This framework allows brand managers to identify what level of sophistication their target consumers are in, so they can ensure the product pack (on the shelf) is aligned with the consumer’s needs.

The Nescience Loop© framework is a strategic marketing design tool we specifically developed for Jam&Co. It assists our branding and packaging designers to dive into the minds and emotions of the target consumer.

With this tool, our packaging designs are strategically focused and targeting the emotional and functional needs of the target market.

The more we know about our consumers buying journey the greater the CX we can create for them and the more we can get them to engage with the product at the shelf.

4. Look out for: Sustainable / Reusable Packaging/Single use plastic

As consumers we are witnessing the effects of climate change and it’s impact on people all around around the world.

Packaging is one of the key pollutants contributing to the whole climate change issue.

As in 2018, sustainable packaging will continue to be one of the biggest packaging design trends in 2019.

The focus on using more sustainable materials for packaging will continue to increase as both designers and brand marketers look to narrow the carbon footprint gap of packaged goods and create designs that extend the packaging life cycle.

Sustainable packaging is no longer just a trend. It’s become a consumer expectation.

Just look at the removal of “single use plastic bags” from the registers of both Coles and Woollies. Even the term “single use plastic” has now become quite common place.

in 1919 even more brands will discover the impact of having their packaging being seen as a type of business card which they leave in their customers’ home. This means that their packaging is“shareable” in either a positive or negative.

Those brands that are able to create “reusable and re-purposable” boxes that can be turned into everyday uses, will be able to capture even a larger share of the “shareable” social media market in 2018.

Repurposable packaging

in 1919 Brands will need to tackle the whole issue of sustainability in far more innovative ways than simply using lightweight materials.

Check out Zara’s marketing slogan “our boxes are made of boxes with a past.” Their boxes are made from recycled materials. Iceland (British supermarkets chain) has withdrawn from using plastic in any of their private-label products.

Packaging designs that consider and implement:

  • recyclable,
  • biodegradable,
  • compostable and
  • reusable
  • shrinking in size
  • using fewer adhesives
  • made from lighter weight materials

will gain momentum in 1919 as brand realize that they have no option and are no longer exempt from addressing the issue of packaging sustainability.

Secondary functionality

Creating packaging that can transform to have a secondary function or can be used as beautiful keepsake will become a key differentiator.

Another example of secondary use we’ll see more of in 2019 will be compos-table packaging which contains seeds that can be planted to grow grass or flowers.

Plantable Packaging

5Look out for: How do I look “on camera”?

“The biggest challenge facing all business’s today is that the consumer is no longer just buying products. They are buying experiences! “Products used to be the basis of differentiation, but not anymore.” 

Adobe ‘s President and CEO of Adobe Shantanu Narayen

In 1919 more brands will consider how their packaging designs will appear on camera. whilst this concept was a rarity just a few short years ago today’s pack designs are created with the view to be shared publicly via social sharing networks.

The unboxing process

The whole unboxing process is becoming more and more prominent.great packaging designers know that when their design has touched the consumer, those same consumers will take delight in sharing their product experience via their favorite social media platform.

Using your packaging as a branding and marketing tool will become becoming increasingly important in 2019.

Unboxing goes beyond simply making your box look cool. Brands that optimize their packs to take advantage of the whole “unboxing” experience will leave their customers with a lasting first impression.

In 2017 Dotcom Distribution conducted a survey of online shoppers to understand their attitudes towards packaging, shipping, and the online shopping experience. In their research they found that 36.8% of respondents had seen an unboxing video.

Unboxing videos provides brand managers with a great opportunity to show off the product quality and have an independent third party sell the product via social media for them. 

“Shareability.” is all about making sure that once the product is taken home and used its shown off and shared on Facebook and Instagram with friends and family. This is known as “the shareability factor.” Your pack and brand needs to be designed with shareability in mind.


Personalisation is the process of tailoring product packaging design to the individual target market or person’s name, characteristics or preferences.

  • A core design objective is to speak directly to the target audience. Call out to me like you really know me and what’s important to me. Call to me in a voice and in specific language that tells me you get me.
  • The more you can establish and build rapport with the consumer believing that your product was created specifically for them, the more they’ll experience an emotional connection with your brand and the product.
  • This also means they’ll be more amenable to sharing with their group across their social platforms.
  • True personalisation taps into the most core fundamental human need…the need to be noticed and appreciated.
  • Demand for personalisation and customisation is growing and will continue to grow exponentially.

As more and more brands seek to become audience specific and customer relevant, so other brands will have to re-imagine their products and packaging to stay in touch keeping the consumer’s attention.

Facts about personalisation


6. Packaging design trend to look out for: Stand-Up Pouches

According to Packaging Strategies, stand-up pouches are one of the fastest-growing segments of flexible packaging. Why?

Stand Up Pouch

Stand-up pouches are both convenient to use and durable. Many of the stand-up pouches are also resealable.

This trend is expected to continue to grow in 2019, especially because these pouches can be beautifully designed with eye-catching designs to maximize on-shelf facing appeal.

The stand-up pouch bags are expected to grow up to 7-9% each year until 2023. They are durable enough to keep products safe from most physical and environmental hazards during transportation.

Because stand-up pouches are resealable, they also ensure product freshness and protection. This feature makes these pouches a perfect solution for both foods and other perishable product. They provide better customer experiences than many other packaging options.

As the  August 2018 article, from Flexo Impressions, 3 FLEXIBLE PACKAGING TRENDS TO ANTICIPATE IN 2019 explains, “Pair these advantages with their remarkable cost efficiency, and it’s no wonder why stand-up pouches are poised to become a dominant flexible packaging option in 2019.”

This blog post was based on the October 2018 article 6 Packaging Trends Gaining Steam in 2019