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Affordable DIY Packaging Ideas For Etsy Shops

Last Updated:

February 19, 2023

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“Wow! It's clear that this seller put a lot of care into creating this order!”


Good packaging has the potential of delighting your customers, but many Etsy sellers overlook this aspect of their Etsy business.


Ignoring your product packaging could mean lower customer satisfaction and less long-term profit.


In this guide, we’ll explore affordable packaging ideas that not only help your products stand out but also increase customer satisfaction.



Importance Of Good Packaging

Packaging is not just functional, it’s also a marketing tool for your Etsy business. Before diving into the specific affordable elements of product packaging, let’s look at some reasons why good handmade packaging can help your success on Etsy:


Build Long-Lasting Relationship With Customers

Packaging elements like thank you note can help you show your appreciation and make customers feel valued. Because of that, customers are more likely to come back in the future. Return customers are important to handmade businesses like yours.



Improve Purchase Experience Of Customers

You can include elements in your order that help customers get the most out of your product. For example, a care guide for jewelry can help them keep the jewelry piece in the best condition, and a use instruction for cosmetic products can help customers achieve the best results.


Also, good packaging can also increase the perceived value of your product; it can make your product seem more valuable than it already is. This will make customers more satisfied with their purchase, and more likely to leave a positive review.



Stand Out From Other Etsy Sellers

From my experience, a lot of handmade sellers on Etsy don’t pay enough attention on packaging. Having packaging that matches the level of ‘handmade quality’ of your product will create a memorable buying experience for customers. And they are more likely to come back in the future or recommend your shop to friends and family.




Affordable Handmade Packaging Elements

Thank You Notes

A handwritten thank you note is one of the best ways to show appreciation to your customers. It shows that your shop cares about the customers, which makes them likely to buy from you again.


According to this research from Ariyh, customers who receive handwritten notes (or photocopy of a handwritten note) increase their spending. A computer typed thank you note doesn’t have the same effect of increased spending.


It doesn't have to be anything fancy, especially in the beginning. A simple “Hi (customer name), thank you so much for your order from (shop name)! I really appreciate it!” is enough. You can write it on a blank business card which costs next to nothing.


For the long term, I’d recommend scanning your handwritten note and print out thank you cards with photocopies of your handwritten notes. Make sure to leave the customer's name empty so you can write it in when you ship the order.



Business Cards

A business card is another great elements to include in your packaging. It shows your business information, including your Etsy shop link and social media account names. Consider using QR codes for the website links, so that customers can scan to reach your shop without having to type in the address manually.


Business cards are pretty cheap to print, and can be combined with the thank you note on one side of the card.



Social Share Cards

One way to encourage your customers to share your product on social media is by including a social share card. It can improve your brand's visibility on social media like Instagram and Facebook. By sharing on social media, customers usually get a coupon code for their future purchases in return.



Freebies & Samples

Including a freebie or a product sample is a great way to surprise and delight your customers. Make sure the gift is relevant to the order and adds value to the customer’s purchase.


For example, if you sell handmade bar soap, you can include a small sample bar of your bestselling scent or a new exciting scent that you are introducing.


Make sure the gift is not too valuable. A gift that’s too valuable can devalue your main product, which is opposite of what you’re trying to achieve.


Kindred Fires includes a match box which complements their main product - handmade candles - perfectly


Instructions & Care Guides

An instructions or a care guide can help your customers get the most out of their orders.


A simple instruction can teach customers the best way to use your product, which help them have a better purchase experience; while a care guide can help customers take better care of your product, and they are more satisfied with fewer complaints as a result.

Washing instruction templates like this one can improve customer experience



Logo Stamps

A logo stamp is a great way to cheaply add your shop logo to different parts of your packaging, like wrapping paper, shipping boxes, etc. It's a versatile and long-lasting investment for your shop.


You can find logo stamps on Etsy easily for a relatively low price. They are about $15-25 each. You can then buy the stamp ink pad that’s close to your brand color to make the packaging unique to your brand.


Logo stamp from StampedwithLoveXOXO

Wrapping Paper & Tissue Wrappers

Tissue wrapping paper is an affordable way to wrap your product. It’s less about protecting the product and more about complementing the branding of the product.


Choose colours or patterns that are similar to your shop’s branding or pay extra in custom printed wrapping paper to give your product a unique touch.



Butcher Paper

Butcher paper is a type of kraft paper that’s originally sold to butchers, but now it’s commonly used for arts and crafts, including packaging. It’s very affordable and commonly found in stationery shops.


It’s a versatile element that can be used in multiple ways. You can wrap it directly against the product (like the tissue wrapper) or scrunch it up to act as shipping protection. It can also give the packaging a hand-crafted, handmade look.



Stickers

Stickers are a fun way to add some personality to your handmade product packaging. You can find pre-made stickers on Etsy like 'handmade with love' and 'this package is happy to see you too’. They are pretty affordable with many different designs.


Custom stickers can be a bit more expensive, but they can include your brand's logo with custom words and elements.

Cute order appreciation sticker from Enjace


Strings & Ribbons

Strings or ribbons are an inexpensive way to give your packaging a more polished and finished look. One idea is to tie a neat bow-tie after wrapping the product in the tissue wrapping paper.



Creating Affordable Packaging Ideas

For small items that don’t need too much protection, like a t-shirt or a bar soap, you can use a combination of these elements:



For products that need more protection, like jewelry pieces, you can add these extra elements in order to provide more protection:



Wrapping Up

Now that we have learned the different affordable ways to package your product, click here to read this budget friendly guide to start a new Etsy shop with (almost) no money.


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