Over ten per cent of global retail sales now derive from e-commerce. Over the next three years alone the e-commerce fulfilment channel is forecast to grow at nearly 20% CAGR. Given that this surge is driven more at the expense of bricks and mortar than by overall retail growth, it’s no secret that adding value to the online shopping market is one of the great opportunities for packaging today. In this still young marketplace there is a profound requirement for packaging to be optimized for the e-commerce direct-to-consumer supply chain.
“It was evident after our first engagement with the Rieke team that delivering innovation in the e-commerce channel was of strategic importance and they were eager to work alongside us to solve these customer pain points.
Amazon provided Rieke common failure modes of the current trigger sprayer and the scale of the commercial impact of innovation in liquids packaging. This unlocked the Rieke team to drive an innovation plan around this mission.”
Justine Mahler, Amazon’s manager of Customer Packaging Experience
Products passing through the e-commerce channel have to withstand more frequent and rigorous handling: statistically, a package is handled on average over twenty times (four times more than traditional bricks-and-mortar retail) and, anecdotally, it is more likely to be tossed into a van or dropped on a doorstep. If the packaging is insufficiently robust, the costs to the brand owner can be significant. Replacing a destroyed item can cost up to 17 times as much as shipping, but the damage to your reputation can be even more.
A particularly challenging product category for the small parcel delivery channel are liquid products, which are liable to break and leak during shipping. As consumers become more comfortable with ordering everyday liquid items on online platforms, the need for packaging designed to withstand e-commerce fulfilment increases.
As a leading global player in dispensing systems for personal care, food and healthcare packaging, the challenge of e-commerce fulfilment has been a major R&D focus for Rieke. Our aim has been to deliver innovations that allow liquid products to reach the consumer without damage or leakage – and eliminating the need for multiple layers of secondary packaging. So, how have we done it?
Working with Amazon - Creating 'Frustration Free Packaging' Solutions
Amazon is leading the field and changing the rules of the retail market. Despite impressive growth in multiple categories, shipping liquids was proving to be especially tricky. After visiting Amazon’s corporate office and labs, Rieke was able to get valuable inputs from Amazon from a technical and commercial perspective. Our team then began exploring opportunities to resolve each failure mode to pass ISTA 6 requirements. Amazon gave Rieke three criteria for the project:
- Eliminate leaks, rather than simply reduce or contain them.
- Provide an equivalent or better than brick-and-mortar experience, for the customer—that is, for convenience, have no inner seals to remove and a product that is ready to use
- Allow consumers to remove the closure—to refill the bottle, for example—which required a redesign of the closure’s ratchets.
Rieke rose to the challenge and engineered the ‘Ultimate E-Trigger’ that passes Amazon's stringent performance criteria (ISTA6), to guarantee a leak free and 'Frustration Free Packaging' product every time. The Ultimate-E offers an omni-channel solution for brand owners looking to expand into ecommerce while preventing proliferation of stock-keeping units (SKUs).
Explore Rieke’s E-Commerce Range of Products
Since the launch of the Ultimate-E, Rieke is proud to announce the launch of multiple new products suitable for the e-commerce channel. Browse our site to learn more.