Let’s start this conversation from a customer’s perspective for a change. Don’t we all have those favorite Amazon shopping experience moments? I mean, yes, even the eCommerce giants can make some mistakes, but 99% of the time, their orders are right on time, thoughtfully packed, and easily trackable. And if you are an eCommerce business owner yourself, Amazon definitely would have set some bars high up there.
eCommerce has grown and evolved over the years, and Amazon set many trends that have come and gone. A lot of these are based on improving customer experience and retaining them. The consumer-friendly shopping experience, ship in own container (SIOC) packaging, and Amazon transparency are some of these trends that are still going strong.
Over the years, Amazon has taken many measures to offer sustainable packaging. One of these strategies is SIOC packaging, where the product is shipped in its own container (considering the box the product is in meets specific requirements), without additional packaging from the fulfillment center.
Understanding the Basics of SIOC
Even though Amazon first initiated SIOC as a strategy as part of their “frustration-free packaging,” it has prompted a lot of brands to ensure their packaging is top-notch. Irrespective of a brand having excellent and aesthetically pleasing packaging, not all of them satisfy SIOC shipping.
There are certain testing protocols implemented by Amazon, such as ISTA-6 (Type A through H), which will determine if your brand’s packaging is eligible for SIOC or not. You may ask if they need such strict measures to approve simple packaging. But Amazon has their reasons for doing so, which include:
- Cost-effective packaging ensures ongoing improvement of packaging and shipping protocols
- Shipping products in the certified SIOC helps reduce additional packaging charges and materials
- Even if the SIOC packaging suffers minor cuts, dents, or other cosmetic problems, as long as the product is undamaged, it’s okay
- Only high end or premium products over a specific price range would be given additional packaging protection
- SIOC packaging eliminates unnecessary packaging for the products, which helps in optimizing every step of the packaging and shipping journey
Advantages of SIOC Packaging
Both the brands and Amazon benefit from SIOC packaging in many ways. But one of the significant ones is the reduction of chargebacks. If you are an established eCommerce service provider, your chargebacks can go over thousands of dollars per product. Often, these chargebacks are mentioned as manufacturer errors and lead to the brand and service provider losing out on both brand loyalty and money. Ensuring SIOC standards helps in reducing chargebacks as well. Other advantages include:
Whether selling in the eCommerce industry or not, every business is moving towards sustainable solutions, and SIOC is one of the powerful strategies that help the cause. A majority of customers prefer brands that undertake eco-friendly packaging and shipping solutions. SIOC packaging eliminates excess packaging materials and reduces waste and packaging costs, which benefits the customer, business, and the environment.
One of the significant costs for an eCommerce business is packing and shipping. When using SIOC packaging, you are saving up on additional boxes, packing materials, labor, and much more. And as SIOC certification requires specific box size and weight requirements, you are guaranteed that the packaging is of the right size—not too big or small—which leads to reduced DIM weight costs.
Profit Margin Expansion
Earning the SIOC certification and revamping the packaging to suit Amazon’s needs might cost quite a lot initially, but it’ll only benefit you in the long run, especially if you are a brand or a partner. Reduction in packing and shipping costs would improve your profit margin, allowing you to invest your money in growing your business.
People crave an exceptional shopping experience no matter how big or small the product is. We are at that age where “unboxing” a package itself is a big deal and caters to a major portion of customer experience. Having SIOC certified packaging can help boost your brand image among the target audience and attract new potential customers too. One of the criteria that need to be fulfilled in order to get SIOC certification is that it should have simple, easy-to-use packaging. This only makes the unboxing experience for the customer a more pleasant and simpler one.
Do You Need to be an Amazon Partner to Adopt SIOC Packaging?
The main idea behind SIOC packaging is to reduce unnecessary packaging and shipping costs and time by switching to eco-friendly packing solutions. You don’t have to be an Amazon shipping partner to implement SIOC packaging.
With the help of a 3PL fulfillment partner like ShipBots, you can say goodbye to all your packing and shipping worries. Whether you want to ship the products in the same package as the brand or add a little more protective dunnage without adding to your shipping costs, we are fully equipped to handle any packing and shipping requirements you have.
With an efficient inventory management system, sustainable packing solutions, and multiple warehouse locations, we are aware of every trick and tip under the sleeve to ensure a safe and pleasant unboxing experience for your customers. Whether you are shipping a normal product or a high-end one, we will make sure they are packed sustainably and with maximum protection to prevent any damages that may occur while shipping or in transit. Get in touch with us today to learn more about how we can help your eCommerce business achieve SIOC strategies to the maximum benefit.