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Revamping Clothes Packaging Methods To Meet Fashion Sustainability Goals

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A recent study showed that around the world, a staggering 85% of people have moved toward more sustainable purchasing behaviour in the last few years, and a third of all consumers are happy to pay a premium price for a more eco-friendly product or service.

This is a clear indicator that sustainability is very quickly becoming an absolutely essential part of any business that wants to see growth into the future. In fact, it is a shift that businesses need to see happen as soon as possible.

And with an estimated valuation topping US$672 billion in 2023, operating within the e-commerce fashion retail industry without showing you’ve taken steps towards reducing your carbon footprint may have a huge impact on profits moving forward. Start by evaluating your business model and practices. Perhaps consider sustainable packaging for clothing and other products you ship. 

Approaching sustainability across multiple areas of the business

One fantastic method of reducing your business’ environmental impact is by reviewing your current returns logistics processes and looking at ways you are able to revise it to help reduce the need for it to happen in the first place. 

Each package that is returned means an increase in emissions from the various types of transportation that’s required to get it back to you. As such, minimising the chances of this through an intensive returns logistics audit is a great way to become more eco-friendly.

It’s no secret, though, that packaging is an integral part of running an online fashion retail business. So being able to implement more eco-friendly packaging ideas for the clothing your customers order is one of the most, if not the most, important elements of creating your sustainability image.

5 top eco-friendly packaging ideas for clothing

We now know that customers are moving towards purchasing decisions that are more sustainable. We also know that many will also happily pay extra for the privilege, too. 

Take your brand into the sustainability spotlight by implementing one or more of these great eco-friendly packaging ideas for clothing and other products:

1. Plantable packaging

Ideal as a clothing packaging idea for smaller items, plantable packaging is made from recycled paper and cardboard which is embedded with seeds which can be planted in the ground after use. 

So when your customers receive their product from you, they’ll see that you’ve used plantable packaging which can help grow your brand equity.

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2. Custom packaging

Instead of going with standard sizing for a wide range of items you’re shipping (which often involves using lots of filler to take up empty space), consider having custom packaging designed for the products you sell the most. 

Not only will this reduce overall wastage from the materials themselves, but reducing the package’s dimensions can also lower your shipping rates.

3. Earth-friendly filler

Air bags, bubble wrap and polystyrene might be a little cheaper, but are atrocious for the environment. If you’re serious about improving the way you do business and becoming more eco-friendly, you should think about using a greener alternative. 

There are quite a few options out there, from recycled cardboard and paper-based filler, to corrugated cardboard bubble wrap and biodegradable and compostable corn starch packing peanuts.

4. Recycled cardboard

A relatively obvious change is simply moving over from generic cardboard to a recycled option instead, which generally can itself again be recycled by your customer or reused on their end as a storage solution.

5. Packaging that can be repurposed

This might be a little on the tricky side, but designing packaging that customers can actually repurpose into something else can be a fantastic way to fall into their favour and become their preferred retailer as a result. 

With reference to TrendHunter, one such concept is the clothing packaging bag which can be turned into a coat hanger, created by US graphic designer Jayvn Solomon.

How DHL Express can help you with sustainable packaging for clothing

With online shopping becoming a popular activity and consumer behaviour shifting to become more eco-conscious, it’s imperative businesses quickly adapt their business practices to remain competitive. When you partner with DHL Express, you’re connecting with a highly renowned international global delivery company that has a major focus on sustainability. 

At DHL Express, we’re investing €7 billion until 2030 to drastically reduce our overall greenhouse gas emissions via initiatives such as more sustainable aviation, carbon-neutral buildings, switching to electric vehicles for 60% of our last-mile delivery and offering a range of alternative green logistics solutions.

This also includes assisting our e-commerce and fashion retail customers with eco-friendly packaging made from recycled materials and other ideas to help minimise their carbon footprint.

Take the next step with DHL Express and open an account with us today.