Packaging is one of your greatest allies as a subscription box owner. Your packaging can inspire loyalty, excite the senses, and serve as a practical means of protecting your products.
We get a lot of questions about packaging at Subscription School: What size box should I use? Where do I find manufacturers? What should I think about when shipping?
Here are the key terms you need to know, and some quick links to resources if you’re planning to design and order your own custom subscription box packaging:
- Plates & Dies: Plates and dies are the tools used to cut the cardboard and print inks on your custom box. These costs vary, but are usually around $750-1500 for standard subscription box sizes and designs (they’re a one-time expense).
- Flute: Fluting describes the thickness of a box. Most subscription boxes work with a standard E-Flute (1/16″). Our case study around How to Launch a Subscription Box shows Prospurly, which uses E-Flute board.
- You can order your Custom Subscription Box Packaging from one of our vetted vendors in our Resources section. (Psst. We don’t make a commission – these are just suggestions!)
- If you’re considering doing a custom size, keep USPS Cubic Shipping Rates in mind – find out where the dimensions of your box land, and consider ‘maxing’ out your sizes to take advantage of your cubic tier.
- Stickers and Stamps are good alternatives to completely custom packaging. Check out our guide on stickers and stamps for subscription boxes for more information on cost and pros and cons.
Below, we’ll check out some good examples of custom packaging in a few different product categories:
Packaging for T-Shirts and Clothing Subscription Boxes
TeeTube has a sleek, simple design that is unique in the subscription world: a tube!
2. Trunk Club
Trunk Club is a larger, deeper box, with a minimal but pronounced design.
3. Five Four Club
Five Four Club offers another take on clothing packaging: it comes in a black bubble mailer and is wrapped in custom tissue paper.
Packaging for Snack Boxes
Nature Box tends to update their box design, but inside, you can see how they include extra box materials to hold snacks.
Treatsie captures another take on minimalist design.
Boxtera is a snack box with it’s own snacks inside, similar to Nature Box, and features a unique exterior design pattern.
Packaging for Fresh Food Subscription Boxes
7. Hello Fresh
Hello Fresh delivers their ingredients in large square boxes with individually wrapped ingredients, usually packed with freezer packs.
8. Blue Apron
Blue Apron is similar to Hello Fresh in that their individual ingredients are also packaged and labeled, as seen here.
Plated comes in the same type of box as Hello Fresh & Blue Apron – a larger, square box packed with insulation and individually wrapped ingredients.
Packaging for Gamer/Nerd Subscription Boxes
Loot Crate changes their box design often, usually monthly. Here are two examples of their uniquely branded boxes and the contents from inside.
Bitsbox is bright, yellow, and comes with a printed guide and unique packing material inside.
12. Fandom of the Month
Learn More About Custom Subscription Box Packaging
Interested in learning more? Head over to our Custom Packaging and Fulfillment section to learn more about how to make the most of your boxes.
Also, check out the standard Cratejoy boxes or design your own custom boxes through the Cratejoy box program! We offer high-quality boxes, fast shipping, and special prices, only for Cratejoy sellers!
Cratejoy includes all the tools you need run a subscription box business: secure checkout, shipping tools, analytics, marketing, and listings optimized to bring you sales.