10 Key checklist to start your Food Packaging Design


Food packaging design is so important when it comes to getting a product out in the market. Did you know that consumers are purely drawn to a design based on instinct? Eye-tracking studies show that consumers read on average only seven words in an entire shopping trip, buying instinctively by color, shape and familiarity of location. But then again, there is so much more when it comes to designing a package.

There are a few things that are looked into before a food package is designed. This helps in the process of knowing exactly how hard to hit the nail on the head. It’s impossible to just do something without a plan or a checklist, right? Well… maybe not everything needs a plan or a checklist, but food packaging design surely does, and below you will find a checklist that can aid you in the process of making the best food packaging design ever!

#1 Design


Source : [Packagingoftheworld]

Depending on what the food product is, it is important to be practical about it. You can’t design a microwaveable meal’s package using a tiny thin box can you? The customer will get burned and their food will be all over the place, and in the end you would too!

Where design is concern, remember to always be practical, and did you know that 93% of consumers make a purchase decision based on visual appearance and color? There is no point in having a beautiful, standout, informative package if it’s not practical.

#2 Shape


Put yourself in this scenario, you’re hungry and you get into the nearest convenient store. You noticed this biscuit box shaped like a triangle, and because it caught your attention and your stomach told you so, you purchased it. Now guess what happens? Because the biscuits are almost rectangular in shape, only a few pieces could fit in the package, and you have emptied the box and are left hungry.

So, what’s in a package shape?… Its size. The packaging size is a very important factor to consider because this plays a huge role concerning logistics. If a product package is designed poorly, this would incur a lot of cost to the company’s product.

Once a shape has been identified for a product package, it would be easier to identify how big or small the entire package will be. Once the size has been identified, choosing what material to make the packaging in would be realized too.

#3 Brand Name

It’s all in the name, as the old adage goes, and package designing should hold on to this. There is a reason why some people call their pet black dog Blackie instead of Brownie, because if they did it would be terribly misleading, don’t you think?

Similarly, if a brand’s name symbolizes something sweet and/or sour, its packaging design should represent that as well. If a packaging design can emulate the brand’s name well, this would help add value to the brand and even the product.

#4 Unique Selling Point (USP)

Let’s assume that you have come up with a product that you know will have people convinced to switch to your brand because of something your brand has that the other brands don’t. It would be important to resonate that.

A food packaging design that shows the brands product uniqueness would give you an advantage in the marketing industry. Even if you don’t have a product with any specific unique selling attributes, it could still leverage of its packaging design from the color combinations, fonts, layouts and so on that can be used to attract potential customer, and leave a lasting impression through the food packaging design alone.

#5 Target Audience

A well thought out food packaging design can potentially attract the desired audience. It is important to identify who your target audiences are before designing a package. The first thing you have to identify is the age range; how old is your targeted audience? This would help you identify how far you can take your food packaging design.

Once you have identified the age group, you have to now narrow it down to male, female or both. This is crucial because you wouldn’t want to package a food product for women looking masculine and having a man consuming it, would you? So thinking about these little aspects can go a long way in your product packaging design.   

#6 Special Highlights

Now, most packaging design forgets this simple attribute. Some products have special highlights that they would probably want to highlight to their customer, and it would be a shame if it was not highlighted.

For instance, if there was a yummy chocolate cake in the market that has an equally yummy packaging design; it will surely attract a variety of customers.  These customers will continue buying this product without ever knowing that adding whipped cream on top of the cake could enhance its chocolaty taste. Customers would be missing out on this, and the creators/owners of the product would be missing out on potential added value.

#7 Tagline

A tagline! Taglines are a fun thing to add to a food packaging design. It makes the product more memorable. Take Oreo cookies for example, its tagline is “wonderfilled” or “Milk’s favorite cookie”. Because of its tagline, some customer, especially children, tend to affiliate milk with Oreo cookies. But it doesn’t just stop at the tagline. The slogan; “Twist, lick, and dunk” has also incorporated milk through a picture showing a piece of Oreo being dunked into milk. How amazing is it to know that a single brand has the power to influence how someone eats a cookie.

Oreo cookies were able to instill this action through its packaging design. It is usually on the box, written clearly for all who buy to see. So implementing a tagline on a product package can help push a product further and also into memory.

#8 Nutritional Facts


Source : [Nutrition Food Label]

If it is a food product, then this should be a no brainer. In current times, people are becoming more concern about their health and want to know the benefits they are getting from a specific product.

On a food package, the nutritional panel should be grouped together as per the stipulated guidelines. Customers appreciate it when they are being informed on what they are putting in their bodies, wouldn’t you? This also helps educate them on certain food items they previously did not know about.

#9 Ingredients

Stating what ingredients are used in a product is very important in packaging design. There are many things that people are allergic to. The last thing you would want is to get in trouble for forgetting to inform consumers who are allergic to peanuts that your product does indeed contain peanuts.

#10 Warning Signs

Just like how there is a warning signs at the deep end of a swimming pool, it is important that a food product’s packaging design comes with warning signs too. This helps in informing customers when to take precaution and what to avoid. For example, placing a warning sign on harmful mixtures of certain food products could potentially save a life. Remember it is always better to be safe than sorry.


People are instinctively attracted to beautiful things that are pleasant to the eyes. A food product that is well designed and interesting is bound to attract more potential customers than a product that is poorly designed and looks bland. This is essential in food packaging design. It is after all the key part in marketing a product and making sure it sells. What this means is , food packaging design that attracts customers are bound to be remembered for years to come.


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