SSI Packaging is proud to announce Kevin Thomas as our our newest team member. Kevin is our New Product Specialist for marking and coding solutions in Virginia and Maryland. As a graduate of North Carolina State University Kevin leveraged his business management degree at Frito Lay before coming to SSI Packaging Group.
We are glad to have Kevin join our team. If you are in Virginia or Maryland and need assistance with marking or coding your products, please feel free to contact Kevin @ 804.649.1111
Your products’ label should do the talking for you, acting as the perfect icebreaker for your message. By picking the right design and keeping an eye out for the details, your product can communicate your values while it’s sitting on the shelf. Here are some key things to keep an eye out for when designing or selecting a label.
Busy store shelves that are crowded with options can have the effect of drowning out your product. That why it’s important to make sure that your label clearly defines what your product is and what it does. Clear and legible branding is the easiest way to make sure your consumers notice your merchandise, and remember who you are.
Font is a good example of a way that you can get creative with your messaging. You can choose fonts that reflect what the product does, like using minimalistic fonts for products that are used for cleaning. Try not to get too fancy with your choices though, it’s important that the information is clear and easy to read.
One technique to label design is paying attention to how your competitors have chosen to present their products. You can decide to stand out from the pack with original labeling, or you can stick to tried and true styles. As long as the design is consistent and true to your brand you can make sure that no one will gloss over your items for someone else’s.
White Space Use
Keeping the design clean and simple is a great opportunity to use white space efficiently. If you are providing a product that has simplicity as a value this can be reflected with packaging that uses white space to create a focus upon the key details of your product. Many beauty and health companies use this technique efficiently and recently it’s even been moving over into market segments like nutrition and medicine.
Colors can be very meaningful, and the colors you choose can impact how people feel about you brand. For example, if your product label is red or orange it typically conveys an energetic feeling and a vibe that says excitement. Blues, browns and greens can emphasize holistic values.
Make sure that your label fits the size and the texture of the container. If it is an attractive item, like honey, you could make the label smaller to enhance the natural appearance of the product. If you want to cover up a less appealing looking item you can use label size to your advantage. Match the sizes and shapes in ways that make sense to your brand image.
Quality is important for all aspects of your product, including the label. If your items will be shipped or stored in heat sensitive environments pay attention to the types of materials that go into your labels so that fading, peeling or cracking does not occur. Also nice to note, it’s possible that people may want to reuse your product container for reuse later so you could try to get labels that are easier to remove.
SSI Packaging Group provides a full line of quality and reliable label printers and applicator systems. Whether you're interested in high speed options like the 3600 PA System or the entry level CTM 1800 PA System, SSI has you covered for any and all of your printing and labeling needs. To find out more, check out the full line here or give us a call at 804-649-1111.
Packaging supplies are designed for practical uses, but sometimes inspiration can strike in the most unexpected ways! We’ve gathered some fresh ideas from people who have used packaging create art. Whether you are inspired by these creations or simply surprised, check out these 5 cool things that artists have done with everyday packaging materials.
1. Corrugated Cardboard Villagers
This project by Warren King was inspired by his grandparents, who lived in a small village in China for several years before immigrating to the United States. When Warren traveled to the same village that his grandparents had left, many of the locals recounted stories to him about the Chinese civil war, and about his family members. He decided to recreate the residents of the village in an effort to better understand the people he was meeting, and to explore his grandparent’s history. He formed his sculptures with cardboard and glue, and although they appear to be solid forms he actually left the backs of them hollow to represent his search for knowledge.
2. Stretch Wrap T-Rex
Moscow based Evgeny Ches was inspired by the natural environment to create art with cellophane and spray paint. He wanted to challenge the idea that street art belongs solely in cities by choosing to place his artwork in nature, and remains consistent to the theme by painting mostly animals. His use of neutral colors and the flexibility of his locations combine to give a big surprise to those who find these works of art in the wild.
3. Packing Tape Scenes
Artist Max Zorn layers packing tape to create contrasts between light and shadows. Originally inspired by the street lamps that light up Amsterdam, Max wanted to create art that appeared when night fell, rather than artwork that disappeared. He began by placing his artworks over streetlamps in big cities, and his project has grown globally ever since. Next time you visit a new city look closely at the street lamps, you might find a little surprise!
4. Plastic Bag Television Blub
This art installation by Ronald van der Meijs is called Squaring The Sphere. It is made from a series of interconnected plastic bags that are wired with tubes of air, and as time progresses the bags inflate and deflate in a continuous loop. Ronald shaped the bags to look like a television bulb as a way to connect television and marketing the artist’s perspective on consumerism.
5. Packing Tube Elephant
Spanish studio nituniyo created this elephant out of 6,000 cardboard packing tubes for the annual fallas festival in Valencia. This festival consists of several days of parties, food and artwork and on the last day of the festival the sculptures are burned in special ceremonies. The title of this sculpture translates to “dreams of weight” and the spectators were encouraged to write their wishes or dreams on pieces of paper to place inside of the tubes.
If you are looking for materials to begin your next great art project or simply seeking quality packaging from people who care, SSI Packaging Group is here for you. To find out more, check out our products here or contact us anytime at 804-649-1111.
During a recent Wire & Tube Exhibition the Artist Afran used the Leibinger Jet3UP PI CIJ printer to create a painting (or is it an inking?) of Charlie Chaplin.
Check out this video.
Small business owners are all too familiar with the challenges that come with reducing shipping costs and maximizing efficiency. Here are a few ideas that can help you to tackle this common challenge.
Don't be afraid to negotiate with carriers
Sometimes it’s easy to feel like a little fish in a big tank, especially when it comes to negotiating shipping rates with popular carriers. But don’t despair; if your business is shipping a high number of goods it is possible to negotiate prices with your carriers. This is because shipping companies set their pricing schedules based upon the volume of items that you ship, so more items usually equal lower rates. To facilitate successful negotiations try to maintain clear goals while presenting reliable data. And probably the most important step: make sure that you reach out to several different shipping companies at once. This will allow you an additional bit of leverage that you could use to your advantage (plus encourages a bit of friendly competition between carriers!).
Maximize efficiency by purchasing a label applicator
Practical solutions like purchasing a label maker can help you streamline your shipping process and reduce costs. This way you can avoid writing each label individually, which takes a lot of time and can look unprofessional. If your looking to eliminate operational issues like jams or mechanical adjustments, The Videojet 9550 is a model that can help improve productivity while lowering costs. For business owners with flexibility in mind, the CTM 360a Series Label Applicators are a series of printers that are an industry standard. These printers can be instantly adjusted onsite with any software updates, ideal for entrepreneurs that are on a time crunch. More interested in thermal printers? The CTM 3600PA Printer Applicator is a durable model that can apply labels at high speeds, and the CTM 1800PA Thermal Transfer Printer Applicator is low cost and efficient-the ideal tool for entry level applicators. By making the move towards professional labeling systems you can set up your business for big payoffs later on down the line.
Choose the right materials
It might be tempting to forgo quality packaging when looking for ways to reduce shipping costs. But using cheap packaging has long-term hidden costs that can damage your reputation, and impact your bottom line. That’s why it’s important to consider not the price of your packaging supplies, but the value of your materials. Instead of picking the cheapest box for your big bulky items, choose corrugated cardboard and heavy-duty boxes so that they can be adequately protected in transit. And try not to make the mistake of assuming that each product can be shipped in any sized box, while filling in the excess spaces with packing foam or bubble wrap. It’s safer and more cost efficient to coordinate packaging sizes with the weight and size of the items you are shipping.
Find a Packaging supplier that will treat you right
SSI Packaging Solutions is a team of specialists that are dedicated to serving any and all of your packaging needs. Whether this means making sure that your items arrive safely, or helping you select quality products- we pride ourselves on providing excellent service to small and big businesses alike. Call us at (804) 649-1111 to speak with a representative or view our products to find out more.
An inc.jet .UNO print solution can help you to replace your troublesome CIJ
Printer and here’s why...
By using self-contained HP cartagrages, there is no messy cleanup. The high-capacity ink cartridges are long lasting and when they run out, simply pull out the empty one and drop in the new one.
No Small and Lowered VOC's
Forget the days of fumes and chemical smells from inkjet systems. Because .uno uses a closed packaging system, the ink is delivered on demand only. There are no solvents, spills, or makeup. The result is a no-smell inkjet system that is super reliable.
With it’s simple design comes a great by-product…higher reliability. Get on your business and forget about working if your coding and marking system is working correctly. .uno just works.
Since there are less parts, nothing to maintain, and limits downtime to a few moments the operating cost for .uno systems are a fraction of traditional CIJ systems.
The easy to navigate interface will get you the results you want without having to worry about spending hours programming. Enter your required fields and print.
Space is a huge consideration when considering marking and coding systems. Production lines have limited space for bulky inkjet systems. .uno systems need an extremely small footprint for the printhead and interface, preventing the need to redesign an entire production line.
BONUS - A True Lifetime Warranty
A guarantee of reliability is what your business needs today. And a company to stand behind its words. inc.jet does just this by offering a genuine Lifetime Warranty on its hardware. If there is ever a problem, we will replace it free of charges for the lifetime of that product, whether 1 year or 20 years from now
To take advantage of this limited-time offer, call one of the experts at SSI today. Our goal is to make sure you have the best solution for your particular setting. SSI Packaging Group stands behind our products and our work. We only install marking and coding solutions that we trust based on our long-time experience in the market. Call us today at 804.649.1111
Everyone has had moments popping the sheets of bubbles that are leftover from packaging. But the next time that you have some leftovers, try to resist the magnetic pull of breaking those little bubbles. There are tons of other cool uses for bubble wrap that you can take advantage of.
Protect your windshield
Bubble wrap is a great insulator, and can be used in a variety of ways to protect things from the cold. You can tape sheets of it to the inside of your windows to contain heat during cold snaps and reduce your heating bill. In addition, bubble wrap is a great tool to keep your car windshield frost-free during the snowy winter months. You can also use bubble wrap to protect your home’s windows.
Insulate your plants
Speaking of frost prevention, you can use bubble wrap to protect plants that are too large to bring inside during harsh conditions. By cutting the bubble wrap to the appropriate size and taping around the entire plant, pot included, you can prevent freezing and keep your plants alive until springtime.
Keep your groceries cold
When things start to heat up in the spring and summer, you can use bubble wrap to keep the cold in. Wrap it tightly around your cold groceries when you have a long ways to transport them. It’s a crafty way to make sure you aren’t bringing ice-cream soup to the park picnic!
Bubble wrap is a great medium for holding the shape of delicate items like handbags or tall boots. It is soft enough to prevent stretching, won’t attract moths or rodents, and lasts forever. They’re a great way to preserve the freshness of your accessories when you put them in storage.
Make your travels pop
Next time you have a big adventure, take a little bubble wrap with you in your suitcase. The bubble wrap will save space in your suitcase for any souvenirs you’d like to bring back, and will protect them on the bumpy ride back to your home.
Pad your sleeping bag
If you’re a fan of the great outdoors, bubble wrap can help keep you comfortable. Instead of buying an expensive sleeping pad from a camping store, use bubble wrap as a cheap alternative. You might also find other uses for bubble wrap on your trip that you hadn’t thought of. Lightweight, waterproof, and strong, bubble wrap is just a handy thing to have around during a camping trip.
Bubble wrap is such a tactile material that it’s no wonder kids are naturally drawn to it. Craft ideas for bubble wrap are almost endless: dip it in paint and use it to stamp patterns onto paper; make a jellyfish Halloween costume; or tape it to the floor and let kids roll toy cars over it. Next time the kids are feeling a little bit of cabin fever, grab a bit of bubble wrap and get crafty!
Get everything you need from SSI Packaging Group
When you need bubble wrap or just about any other packaging material, SSI Packaging Group has you covered. We are a leading distributor of Sealed Air product packaging products, including:
If your packaging could talk, what would it say? First impressions count, and packaging is a great way to communicate brand values to consumers from the bat. Items that are delivered in poor conditions do more than just risk damage to the products that you are sending. Big packaging errors tell customers that you don’t have your head in the game. Here are some common packaging mistakes, and how to resolve them.
Tape it up
Contrary to what you might have assumed, there is no one-tape-fits-all in the world of packaging. Different tapes are especially designed for a variety of package sizes, weights, and even temperatures. If you ship out boxes without regard to these specifics your customers could end up with peeling issues, boxes that have been over taped and are difficult to open, or some that are falling apart entirely due to weather fluctuations in transit. Play it safe and match your tape specifically to your shipments individual needs.
Label your stuff
Have you ever tried to read a label and just couldn't quite make out what it said? This irritating event is downright dangerous in some cases (think food production) and can impact the perception of your brand. It is important that your items are marked clearly and efficiently using appropriate coding and marking systems.
Take note of dimensions
There is a good reason that packaging materials come in all different shapes and sizes. Whether your items need tubes, small boxes or mailers, it is important to make sure you select the ideal sizes and materials for your items. Imagine opening up a huge box to find a delicate piece of jewelry inside that has been bounced around during transit! Not matching the sizes of your packaging materials to the needs of your items runs the risk of damaging them. Not only practical, this tip is also environmentally friendly. By paying attention to these details it gives the added benefit of downsizing any potential waste from excess packaging.
Play it safe
Your items should be distributed with care, and this means choosing the appropriate materials to pack with them. There are a few key rules here- for heavy items it is important to use Instapak foam packaging for effective caution and protection. For void fill applications, fill air by Sealed Air will provide light weight solutions to prevent product shifting. For medium to light items paper packaging, inflatable packaging, Bubble wrap, and bubble bags are all excellent choices for protection. Light foam is an excellent choice for surface applications (think table tops, mirrors, etc.). And for electronic items, consider antistatic bubble rolls and bubble envelopes. The shipping process can be rough on your packages, which is why it’s so important to make sure you choose the best materials to protect them.
By identifying and resolving these common packaging issues you can make sure that you are proving your true value to your customers! We know how important packaging is towards building your brand, which is why at SSI Packaging Group “we help you pack and tack your image”®. We offer the latest in industrial marking, coding, and printing technology, as well as premier packaging solutions like bubble wrap, corrugated cardboard, foam, and more to help you beat any and all common packaging mistakes.
If your teeth have been chattering a bit more than usual this winter, and you’ve noticed a spike in your energy bill, you may be wondering how to heat your home more efficiently. Fortunately, there are many steps you can take to warm your home that won’t break the bank. Here are just a few.
Find out if your home is properly insulated
If your home doesn’t have adequate insulation, your heating unit is working much harder than it needs to, with much less effect. Unless you bought your house new, built it, or remodeled it yourself, you probably don’t know what kind of insulation you have, or how much. You can perform your own inspection by following an online tutorial like this one, or hire a professional insulation company. If you find that you have too little insulation—and many older homes do—adding some can greatly reduce your heating bill.
Keep your curtains closed
A major way to conserve heat is by covering your windows, especially in the winter. Bubble wrap and packing foam are both cost-friendly alternatives to more expensive insulation blinds. About 25% of heat escapes though uncovered glass windows, so even though you might not want to view the world through bubble wrap, this is a great way to reduce your energy bill.
Plug up nooks and crannies
You’d be surprised how much energy can slip through an uncovered keyhole, or the cracks beneath the doors. This is because no matter what you do, the cold outside will suck the heat out of the house—a process known as heat transfer—and attempt to infiltrate through every little crack and gap. You can test for drafts by exploring your house with either your hand or a lit candle. Once you’ve identified gaps, you can cover them up with tape or other materials.
Close vents in unused rooms
Some areas of your home might be left untouched until visitors arrive. If you have extra, unused spaces like guest bathrooms or attics, close off their vents so that your heating unit can redirect heat into areas you use the most. The most important part of this step? Remember to re-open the vents in the guest room when grandma comes to visit!
Insulate the floor
The floor alone is responsible for up to 10% of home heat loss, so it’s important to keep it as covered as possible. If your floor is uncarpeted, and you plan on spending a few decades in your home, carpeting might be an investment that eventually pays for itself. You can also buy some big oriental rugs, or make like a Lannister and buy that bearskin rug you’ve secretly always wanted. (Sorry, we had to.)
Let the light in
Sunlight is 100% free, so try to make the most of it. When you notice that the sun is especially bright in a certain window, open the curtains or blinds to let it steam through. Once the sun goes down, close the curtains again to keep the heat from escaping through the windows.
Do you need supplies for ensuring your home is fully insulated? SSI Packaging Group has a wide selection of bubble, foam, and tape products that can supplement insulation and assist in the application of proper insulation around your home or business. Give us a call today with your marking and coding needs for building products. Our goal is to ensure you're needs with coding on building products is met with 100% satisfaction.
Ready to finally launch that passion project? Ready to use the magic of the interwebs to convert tiny homemade soaps cold, hard cash? You’re gonna need some stuff. Here are the top must-have shipping items for your eBay, Etsy, or Shopify business.
Obviously, you’re going to need something to hold your products, and the humble box is pretty much the best option. Shipping boxes come in a wide variety of sizes and can be conveniently stacked until they’re ready to be delivered. This is not an item you want to cheap out on. Make sure that your boxes are sturdy enough to handle some rough-and-tumble handling, and large enough to comfortably accommodate your items. If your items are particularly heavy, you might want to consider heavy-duty boxes instead.
Envelopes and Clear Bags
If you’re planning to ship small items, like jewelry, it will probably be more cost-effective to use shipping envelopes or flat mailers. Chipboard cartons, which are white and thin, are also great for apparel, jewelry, stationary, and art. You’ll also want to order some sealable plastic bags, which can help protect items from scratches and tangles. Plastic bags also contribute to the unboxing experience by adding an extra touch of quality and professionalism.
It’s crucial that your items arrive safe and sound—otherwise, you’ll have to pay for return shipping and/or a replacement—so make sure to invest in some kind of cushioning. Bubble wrap is your best option, and packing peanuts are another popular choice. Just don’t go the shredded-newspaper route. Not only does it do a poor job of protecting your items, it’s just tacky. Your customers don’t want to feel like they’ve ordered something from a cheap Chinese factory!
Tape. Lots of it. On a roller. Enough said.
Hand-writing your address on every single product might be feasible for your first few months of business, but once you start to take off, can you say “hand cramps”? For that reason, mailing labels are worth every penny. You can either invest in really nice labels from a local print shop, or you can purchase plain label sheets and add your address with a home inkjet printer. Just make sure that the blank labels will work with your printer model. edit.
A Shipping Scale
A shipping scale is a must-have for Ecommerce sellers, as it will allow you to accurately calculate your shipping costs without depending on your post office or UPS store. Make sure that the scale is properly calibrated and large enough to accommodate your items. Some scales even have USB connections, so that you can connect them to shipping software and/or label printers.
Most new sellers don’t think that they’ll need these. But remember that internet-land has no borders, and there’s no telling who will see and want your products. Make sure to grab a few forms from your post office—they’re free—so that you have a few on hand and don’t have to rush out for one every time a Canadian places an order. (Customs forms must be obtained in person; sadly, there’s no way to download them at home.)
Labels, business cards, thank you cards, stickers—there are tons of things you can add to your shipment to jazz up the customer experience. Inexpensive “freebies”, like button pins, can go a long way in delighting your customers and making them likely to re-order. A handwritten note thanking the customer for the order can also add a sweet, personal touch—although, like we said, hand cramps.
Deliver quality with SSI Packaging
Looking for high-quality packaging solutions in Richmond, Virginia and the surrounding areas? SSI Packaging has everything you need to package, track, and deliver your products. We offer the latest in industrial marking, coding, and printing technology, as well as premier packaging solutions like bubble wrap, corrugated cardboard, foam, and more. Click here to view our full selection of products.