The alcoholic beverage industry experienced a unique run during the height of the COVID-19 pandemic. Most of its on-trade sales dropped when businesses in the hospitality industry closed temporarily due to lockdowns and social distancing rules. However, these regulations also led to the rapid increase of alcohol’s off-trade sales in online and offline shops.
According to the Columbia University Mailman School of Public Health, there were $41.9 billion in liquor store sales from March to September 2020, which was a 20% increase compared to the same period in 2019 and an 18% increase from August 2019 to February 2020.
As the world starts to operate at near pre-pandemic levels again, businesses are opening up and resuming operations; thus, competition is rising. Companies should improve their on-trade and off-trade sales to stay ahead of the competition, which they can do by revamping their product packaging design.
Let this article fill you in on the latest alcohol packaging trends to help you curate the best custom packaging for your business.
6 Alcohol Packaging Design Trends That Can Elevate Your Brand
In a saturated industry such as alcohol beverage, you require exceptional packaging design to get a boost in the competition. Here are some alcohol packaging design trends that can elevate your brand.
- Being ecommerce ready
When the global health crisis struck in early 2020, businesses had to find an alternative to continue their operations. The pandemic paved the way for the accelerated growth of ecommerce and digital transformation among different sectors, the alcohol beverage industry included.
Packaging must now look good on the screen, not just on retail shelves. Besides aesthetics, brands must also ensure that the products reach customers safely. The Crown Royal packaging is a great example of this, with high-quality product photos available online and secondary alcohol packaging to provide a phenomenal unboxing experience for the customer.
- Use of sustainable packaging
Consumers are becoming more conscious of the effects of their purchase decisions, which is why more are shifting toward items with sustainable packaging. Aside from making the eco-friendly switch, sustainable packaging also makes a great alternative as factories report a shortage in materials for alcoholic beverages, such as aluminum and glass.
Below are examples of eco-friendly packaging solutions often used by businesses in the alcohol industry:
- Cellulose fiber solutions
This material is 94% recycled paperboard fused with a water-based adhesive without using chemicals. Cellulose fiber solutions are five times lighter than a typical glass bottle and resistant to humidity, spills, and fractures from a five-foot drop.
Guinness packaging is known for its plastic rings attached but has recently changed these for a more eco-friendly alternative. Some beer packaging also introduced a recycled barley straw six-pack holder, which other brands can adapt.
- New wave plastic
New wave plastic may refer to recycled PET. The food-safe, BPA-free plastic is commonly used for containers and is 87% lighter than glass. In traditional wine packaging, the bottles are bulkier and heavier, needing additional packaging to secure the item. Meanwhile, new wave plastic packaging is easier to handle, especially in sets.
- Returnable glass bottles
Back in the day, people returned glass bottles for the milkman to refill. However, today’s packaging solutions are directed toward a more circular economy. The objective is to reuse each bottle ten times using a specially formulated bottle sanitizer from the dairy sector.
- Providing creative storytelling
Another design trend that continues to impact alcohol packaging is storytelling. A customer’s glass contains a piece of history from a custom glass packaging, so when designing a liquor bottle, consider how you can uplift the consumer with a narrative.
To carry out this strategy, use a sophisticated appeal, a touch of nostalgia, or a suggestion that you have a classic product. Take the Budweiser packaging, for example. It’s known for its white, black, and red colors, making it a timeless yet easily noticeable design in the market.
- Communicating to the health-conscious
The COVID-19 pandemic placed a greater emphasis on diet and well-being. With more customers looking for healthy beverage options, you can highlight relevant selling points in your beverage packaging design, such as the product being vegan or gluten-free or having a lower alcohol level.
- Designing and offering convenience
Customers are increasingly seeking convenience in their packaging. Some well-known liquor companies have started including shot glasses or measuring instruments in the case of mixers with their products.
There has been wide demand for easy-to-open packaging, too. Twist-off caps are being used more widely in place of corks, even by well-known companies. This ease is valued along with the fact that this lowers costs for both businesses and customers.
- Use of interactive packaging
You can improve your consumer experience with interactive packaging. Interactive packaging may feature QR codes, NFC chips, and smart labels, which can communicate your business’s branding or key messages to your customers.
The buyer can scan these interactive elements with a device to access information not often indicated in an alcohol package, including details about your company and processes that may be helpful to consumers, without taking too much space in the product label.
Drive Beverage Sales Today
The COVID-19 pandemic may still be felt, but we’ve come a long way in adapting to it. Today, brands are equipped with more knowledge about consumer insights, allowing them to create innovative ways to market their products.
Keeping track of the trends, particularly in alcohol packaging design, is more important than ever. As more people return to their pre-pandemic spending habits, a good packaging design can reintroduce your brand to old patrons and attract new customers, which can help your business stand out from the competition.
Learn more about how your company can improve your product packaging efforts when you reach out to a specialist at Meyers. Our professional printing solutions can make your dream product packaging come to life.
Contact us today and see how we can help you create innovative packaging designs for your business!