The most appealing part of a product’s packaging revealed

What matters most about packaging? According to new research, colour and imagery are the most appealing to consumers.

Colour and imagery are the most attention-grabbing aspects of packaging design, according to research investigating public perception of packing aesthetics in the digital age.

In a survey of more than 650 members of the UK public, nearly 40 per cent say colour was the most appealing feature of packaging, whilst a quarter say that imagery caught their eye the most.

The findings come during a time where brands need to consider how their packaging functions in the digital realm as well as on the shelf.

In light of the explosion of digital marketing and e-commerce, contract packers WePack wanted to find out how brands can adapt their packaging design to ensure it functions both online and offline. To do this, they set first by first what consumers like about packaging.

The results indicate that the basic foundations of getting colour and imagery right still apply when presenting products online, confirming previous research linking colour to consumer purchasing.

In response to the question ‘What catches your attention most when it comes to product packaging?’ 37 per cent say colour, 25 per cent say imagery, 15 per cent say size, 11 per cent say shape, nine per cent say texture and three per cent selected another aspect.

Interestingly, the research also found that although texture was not a key concern, men are far more attracted to the feel of packaging than women. Out of the 59 respondents who cited texture as the most important factor, 70 per cent of them were men.

One out of every eight men say texture caught their attention the most, whereas only two out of 327 women selected this option, implying that when marketing to men online, brands need to find a way to communicate texture via the screen.

Gender differences were also found in those who selected colour, with just 31 per cent of men choosing this option compared with 43 per cent of women.

Overall, the results indicate that brands do not need to rethink packaging design in its entirety to help promote themselves on the internet. But changes can be made to take better advantage of the digital world.

Mick Clarke, sales director at We Pack, says, ‘Adapting to the digital age does not require brands to radically overhaul their understanding of the fundamentals of packaging design. Colour and imagery have always been and still are incredibly important.

‘But this doesn’t mean tweaks cannot be made to take better advantage of digital platforms. Colour and imagery work differently on the screen – and now any pictures or videos of your products are in competition with all sorts of other content on platforms like Instagram, Facebook and Twitter.

‘Making smart decisions and keeping things bright, bold and simple will help your brand stand out in a wash of other online content.’

Further reading on packaging

Owen Gough, SmallBusiness UK

Owen Gough

Owen was a reporter for Bonhill Group plc writing across the and titles before moving on to be a Digital Technology reporter for the

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