void fill packing peanuts

Packaging Void fill, is it a Waste of Space?

In this article we're going to talk about "That which we do not speak of." Yes, one of the great unmentionables in the packaging industry is that of packaging void fill. The stuff that dispatchers will pack into boxes, crates, packages, packs and more to stop your precious product from rattling about or minimise the chances of it suffering impact damage.

There are various forms of void filler including (but not limited to) cardboard strips, board honeycomb, airbags, polystyrene pieces, paper and more much more simply for the purpose of reducing in-package movement or for providing extra cushioning.

Here are some reasons as to why we think you should NOT use packaging void fill:

The Cost of Packaging Void-Fill

If you think about packaging void fill, what it is, and what it is used for, you could well come to the conclusion that it's completely unnecessary expenditure. If you're specifying your packaging correctly, minimising your postage sizes and costs, and thinking the process through properly, you'll usually find you don't NEED voidfiller. The only time it's ever realistically required is when you're shipping multiple items together inside a large e-commerce box - and even then, there are other options you can explore.

Time

The time spent dealing with void filler should actually be spent fulfilling more products, and other profit-making activity. Like the above reasons about correct packaging specification, using void filler means you're probably not doing it quite as well as you could be. Every piece of void fill added at dispatch increases fulfilment times, and costs you money in increased staffing and reduced delivery cycles.

Warehouse Space

This is a no-brainer. All of that useless, pointless, 'spacious' void-fill material has to be stored somewhere dry and accessible. This means, it probably gets stored in your valuable warehouse space. Running out of warehouse space is a common problem for e-commerce focused businesses - and when it happens, it causes all sorts of headaches. So don't invite those headaches by using void-fill!

The Environment

Void-fill is made of useful materials that could be put to a decent use in other applications, or simply not be made at all. Apart from your pocket and green credentials taking a knock, the primary loser from void-fill usage is the environment, with most void-fill ending up in the bin and landfill or worse. Do your bit - don't use void-fill material! Here's an article about the dangers of polystyrene.

Logistics Cost

As you probably know, one of the key factors behind calculating your postage costs, is parcel / envelope weight. So naturally that means you'd want to reduce the weight as much as is possible right? Yet another area where NOT using void-fill will come in helpful. Every gram you shave off parcel eight will affect your bottom-line.

If you take a look at some product packaging - almost ANY product packaging - you'll notice that they don't use any form of void-fill. This is because they have put significant effort into optimising the packaging to fit the product properly, and optimising its delivery / shipping factors. So why would you avoid putting thought into shipping / packaging your products in the best way possible?

The real secret to avoiding voidfiller is in choosing a dozen VARIABLE DEPTH / VARIABLE WIDTH items of packaging. These are well-made types of packaging that can be customised at the point of fulfilment, to fit 'snugly' whatever product it is that you're shipping. Examples in our store include Bukwraps, Cardboard Boxes, Twistwraps and Breezeboxes.

Solutions

We have a wide range of eCommerce packaging that is designed specifically to negate the need for void fill - check out our range on our packaging search page here.

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