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10 Tips for Saving Money on Industrial Packaging Costs

Addison, IL, September 18, 2012 — Industrial packaging is as important as the product itself. It protects and contains; streamlines handling and storage; and facilitates product identification. But packaging's main purpose is to protect the product. Because of this, it must align with the purpose and be able to withstand the demands of storage and distribution. It needs to meet all, or at least most, of these criteria:

  • It must be puncture-resistant and strong enough to withstand sustained loads (heavy cardboard boxes stacked on top of each other).
  • It must be able to cushion the product in the event it's dropped.
  • It must be sealed well enough to prevent the entry of moisture and in some cases air.
  • It must be insulated against climate conditions that will affect the quality of the product.
  • It must be tamper-proof---meaning it should either provide a barrier against premature access or indicate that it has been opened.

"We make it a point to ensure that our clients are using the correct packaging for their purposes," said Mike Theriault, president and CEO of B2B Industrial Packaging. "On the one hand, no one should pay for more than they need, but on the other hand, trying to get by with less-strapping that is meant for a lighter load, for example---can end up being costly in the long run."

Packaging supplies for products that are exposed to the rigors of prolonged or multi-mode transportation need to meet all of the above requirements. The good news is that smart packaging strategy will allow organizations to lower costs without compromising protection. Following are 10 ways to save on industrial packaging:

1. Assess Each Product's Requirements
Thoroughly assess every product's packaging requirements and compare those requirements to current practices. For example, you may discover that you can use a lighter weight cardboard and/or plastic film.

2. Check that Boxes are the Correct Size
Experts say that there rarely needs to be more than 2 inches of dead space between the product and outer box. Smaller boxes will save a significant amount of money both by reducing shipping costs and reducing the cost of packaging materials.

3. Eliminate Excess Layers and Labels
Each layer of cardboard, foam, bubble wrap, etc. that you add to the packaging adds to the cost. If you really need the protection, consider substituting one heavy layer for multiple lighter ones. Also, pare the labels down to one per box. This means one on the outside box and one on each (if any) inside box.

4. Buy in Bulk Where Possible
Look for a supplier that offers a bulk discount. This doesn't necessarily mean the biggest supplier. Many smaller industrial packaging suppliers have developed strong relationships with their vendors and can offer quantity discounts.

5. Reduce Labor Costs
Always be on the lookout for ways to improve efficiency. You can accomplish this by streamlining your processes, maintaining tools and equipment, and continually training workers.

6. Reuse Where Possible
With careful planning, many packaging supplies can be reused-not just your own, but packaging that protects the components you use to build your products. For example, if parts you regularly receive are packaged with woven strap, you can probably collect it and reuse it.

7. Maintain Tools and Equipment
Implement a preventative maintenance program for all of your packaging tools and equipment. Establish an inspection and maintenance schedule and institute a tracking system that will document those operations. Create procedures for reporting problems and potential problems. You also might want to invest in a modest inventory of the spare parts you need most often.

8. Opt for Equipment Repair Over Purchase and Used Over New
Where feasible, rebuild older equipment or buy used equipment. This can be a good option for equipment that is not critical to operations. A piece of equipment is considered non-critical if, when it's down, it will have a minimal effect on production or if there is another similar piece of equipment for backup.

9. Pay Attention to Price Changes
Products such as stretch film and steel banding can move up or down as much as 30% in one month. If you are not paying attention you may be stocking up at the wrong time and your supplier may not be passing on the appropriate discount. Working with a diligent supplier you trust can reduce the risk.

10. Look for a Full Service Supplier
A smart, reliable, experienced, and expert packaging supplier can save you a lot of money. Your supplier should know what's available, how it performs, and exactly what supplies you need for a specific job. Ideally, you'll want a supplier that will take the time to get to know your business. A nice value add is a supplier, such as B2B Industrial Packaging, that also offers tool repair, and used equipment sales and buyback. Be sure to ask about the guarantee and turnaround time.

There are many strapping suppliers, but very few that offer the complete package-speedy shipping; a full, immediately available inventory; a range of value-add services; a fair price; and reliability. B2B Industrial Packaging is one of those strapping suppliers.

About B2B Industrial Packaging LLC (www.B2Bind.com)
Servicing more than 6,000 active clients, B2B Industrial Packaging sells a full range of packaging equipment and supplies including steel strapping, stretch film, and fasteners to clients throughout the U.S. and Mexico. B2B Industrial Packaging is unique in that it also operates three state-of-the-art strapping and fastener tool repair facilities that service the entire U.S. Headquarters are in Addison, Ill. with additional locations in Fort Worth, Texas; Houston; Oakland, Calif.; Los Angeles; Portland, Ore.; Eugene, Ore.; and Seattle.

Visit B2B Industrial Packaging's Media Room at: http://www.B2Bind.com/press
B2B Industrial on Facebook: http://www.B2Bind.com/facebook

Contact:
Jean Van Rensselar, Smart PR Communications
JeanSmartPRCommunications.com
630.363.8081

Caitlin Montgomery, B2B Industrial Packaging
cmontgomeryb2bind.com
630.396.6211

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