In an era which is relentlessly driven by brands, branding has become a multibillion-dollar industry as products compete vigorously for prized market share.

Packaging has a job to do and how well it does that job will help determine the impact of its brand on its customers, yet getting your packaging right is about much more than simply how it looks.

Without a doubt packaging design needs to cut through the noise and capture the customer’s attention with its unique brand personality and credibility, but imagine their reaction when a shipment arrives in pieces because the packaging popped open on route, or the frustration of another fighting to open a stubborn box only to damage the contents inside.

If customer satisfaction is your ultimate goal, it is essential you give sufficient consideration to which adhesives you will use, and how you will use them, to ensure your packaging does what you want it to do and help protect your brand image.

Avoid making these mistakes when it comes to packaging to save your business the trouble of having to rebuild customer trust and loyalty damaged by a poor packaging experience.

Mistake #1: Not leaving enough space on your packaging for adhesive

When designing your packaging, think about what job you need it to do. In the excitement of creating packaging that stands out, it can be easy to overlook its functionality.

For example, board materials intended for freezer storage are typically designed with a barrier on the carton that prevents liquid penetrating the board and spoiling the product.

While the lacquer barrier may be a necessity to protect the packaged contents, the carton design also needs to allow space for the adhesive to bond with the board.

Without it, the adhesive will simply sit on top of the impenetrable lacquer barrier and fail to seal the carton.

Some printing inks act on packaging in a similar way so it is important to think through the type of board you are using, the type of ink and/or lacquer, and your strategy for ensuring adhesive can penetrate the board.

Mistake #2: Not matching the right adhesive for the product

Before selecting adhesive for your packaging, you need to consider whether your product emits any type of vapour or oil.

Products such as fire lighters emit certain types of fumes while fragrances can leach oils that can have a detrimental effect on the adhesive bond and break it down.

This is why it is so important to match your adhesive to your product.

Depending on your product you may even use a combination of adhesives.

Fire lighters for example use hot melt adhesives seal packaging quickly using intense heat to bond with the carton and seal it quickly.

This is followed by the application of a cold adhesive to create a more robust, longer lasting bond that is resistant to fire lighter fumes. It uses air and evaporation to facilitate the bond to harden.

Evaporation takes time, and therefore the hot melt adhesive is used first to secure the flap quickly, creating the initial seal and giving the cold adhesive time to create a stronger bond.


Mistake #3: Using too much adhesive

We have all heard of wrap rage, and probably experienced it at some stage as well, so it is important to take steps to ensure your product doesn’t induce the same degree of frustration with your customer.

That’s why you should take time to consider how much adhesive is the right amount.

Your packaging needs sufficient adhesive to ensure your product arrives at its destination intact. Equally, it shouldn’t be so secure that your customer resorts to using sharp objects to open the packaging only to damage the products inside.

It can be challenging to get the balance right between securing your products for shipment, and creating packaging that is easy to open.

Matching the right adhesive with a complementary bead profile will not only help you achieve this important balance, but also help reduce your adhesive costs by eliminating waste.

Mistake #5: Choosing a cheaper adhesive to save money

Most businesses are on the lookout for ways to save on costs, but cutting corners with adhesives is not the way to do it.

More often than not, choosing cost over functionality leads to problems down the track. If your adhesive doesn’t do the job you need it to do, it can result in damaged products, returned shipments and customers going elsewhere, costing far more than if you had opted for the right adhesive in the first place.

It can be valuable to undertake a variety of tests to understand different adhesives, bead profiles and how they work with various packaging materials.

Talk to the experts at Stephen Miller TLD for adhesives advice

Like packaging machinery, adhesives have developed considerably over the last number of years to the point where robust solutions exists for virtually every packaging option.

With more than 50 years’ experience in end-of-line packaging, our expert team can help you choose the right adhesive for your packaging and use it optimally so it not only does what you want it to do, but helps achieve distinctive and cost-effective packaging that underpins your brand.

For advice about choosing the right adhesive, or for help to solve your packaging problems, get in touch with an expert member of our team on 01 685 2096