Packaging design, the silent salesperson has less than 5 seconds to capture the consumer.

According to Boundless, a cloud powered educator on marketing, a typical supermarket a shopper passes about 600 items per minute, or one item every tenth of a second.  This means your packaging design,your silent salesperson, has less than 5 seconds to capture the consumer. To be successful in it’s sales approach, the pack itself must sell off a shelf without any human sales support.

So, until the advent of AR (Augmented Reality) becomes a generally accepted way for consumers to browse products, the product packaging still needs to stand tall on- shelf and sell the product inside.

80% of what shoppers buy, they buy every week?

Did you know that 80% of what shoppers buy, they buy every week?

What does this mean for marketers who have to break through this habitual shopping patterning in order to get their brand or product noticed and taken home by consumers?
Without the benefit of having a retail salesperson present to stop consumers and explain to them why they should try your product, the package design must do both the stopping and the selling.

To create shelf shout packaging that attracts attention and engages the consumer, clever packaging designers, knowingly or unknowingly, use what we at Jam&Co call the 4 SEC’S Silent Sales Process™.

The 4 S.E.C.’S. Silent Salesperson Process

The 4 SEC’S™ is an acronym that describes the on-shelf silent salesman (packaging design) selling process.

S-Stop – How can the pack on-shelf stop the consumer in their tracks, grab their attention and get them to step forward?

The package needs to call the consumer out from the *recognition zone, (beginning at around 3.5 meters away from the product), into the buying zone, which falls only a meter away from the product pack on shelf? What’s the packages’ version of a person calling the customer over with a big grin and asking: “Have you ever seen this great product?”

The role of the S’ in the 4 SEC’S packaging design selling process is to design a pack that is visually striking in design, color or form ensuring that it calls the consumer attention.

E- Engage – Once you have the consumer’s attention, now the package design needs to draw in the consumer into the curiosity zone, (30 cm). The pack needs to cause the consumer to engage and interact with the it. You want the consumer to pick the pack off the shelf and begin inspecting, reading and touching it. The package design must sensorialy communicate its value message in a distinctive and rational way (easy to use, fat free, organic, gluten free, sugar free etc.)

If there was a salesperson on the shop floor they would entreat the customer to hold, and get a “feel for” the product. They would relay the key features and benefits of the product. What’s your packs version of “pick me up and try me”?

C- Close – In traditional retail environments, the shop-floor salesperson is taught to ask the customer if they would like to buy the product. This selling action is called closing the sale.

Sometimes closing the sale is done by inducing the customer with a special offer (money off, buy one get one free etc.). Other times the sale is closed with a compelling message or a captivating story which aligns the value of the product with the physical and emotional needs of the customer. These influencers press the customer, prompting them to “give it a try and take it home.

Bigbox retailers will often place shelf talker promotions or wobblers in prominent positions to influence the decision to buy. Also where and how retailers position and shelve their products have an big impact on consumer purchasing behaviour.

Without these effective retail selling tools or salespeople, the package design needs to do all the heavy lifting to drive the emotional desire of the customer. The pack itself needs to influence the customer making them take up the product and place it in the shopping trolley.

The designer’s use of impactful visuals and messaging needs to trigger the consumer’s emotional connection to the product/brand. The pack can also excite the senses by expressing a particular style of living or way of being. The Close in package design is designed into the pack by strategically identifying those specific feelings and reactions expected by your target audience and the product’s positioning in the marketplace.

S- Satisfy – It goes without saying that the content of the pack must perform according to the expectations created by the promises made on the outside of the pack. According to research conducted by global packaging company MeadWestvaco Corporation, the pack itself must also deliver on brand promises throughout the life cycle of the product. Meaning that “How you hold it, open it, dispense it, reseal it and store it are all moments to forge an emotional bond between brand and consumer.” Says Steve Kazanjian, director, global creative –MWV.

Is your product being overlooked on shelf?

Of course as packaging designers we recognize the fact that if a pack doesn’t appeal on shelf, chances are high that it will go un-noticed and thereby un-purchased.

So as with any traditional retail selling environment, the packaging must act as the silent salesperson. That being the case the package design should follow the 4 SEC’S Silent Sales Process™.

  • The pack needs to attract the consumer’s attention and engage them.
  • The pack also needs to generate enough emotive appeal that it pops enough to close the sale.
  • Finally the package itself must also deliver on brand promises throughout the life cycle of the product.

Packaging design plays a critical role in getting your product into the hands of the consumer and ultimately into the shopping cart.

To discover how to improve your Silent Salesperson on-shelf conversion rate, Click Here to see if we can help.