Economic downturns and recessions usually result in intensive changes in consumer behavior, forcing prudent providers to adapt their pricing and lines in response to reduced budgets. Occasionally, such eras bring unforeseen jolts that permanently change things up, and to your information, there is no going back.
According to recent studies by DS Smith and McKinsey, the lockdown scenario of the COVID era added new hurdles for the packaging sector, as firms strive to retain loyal consumers and need to rethink the efficiency of their designs. While the COVID period has resulted in a transitory collapse for some, it has also revolutionized the way people purchase in one of the most surprising chapters in modern consumer history, be it industrial consumer or an end consumer.
Changing Behavior of End-users & Industrial Users:
Consumer buying behavior has undoubtedly shifted to e-commerce due to the lockdown situation, despite the fact that many consumers like the tactile sensation of touching items in their hands. In contrast, many will undoubtedly have been converted to the convenience of having their selected products delivered to their homes in shopping.
The consumer experience when their products are opened at home is one of the less noticeable things that lockdowns have stressed. It has re-emphasized the need for packing efficiency since excessive packaging frequently causes annoyance and criticism.
Challenges Faced By The Packaging Industry:
Lately, the packaging industry has been facing many challenges in the last few years. The challenges faced by the packaging industry during Covid-19 include the high cost of raw materials, labor shortage, and increased competition from other sectors. The cost of raw materials has increased due to increased lockdowns and the unavailability of raw materials. The labor shortage was another challenge this industry faced. There was a general decline in employment opportunities due to covid-19 and a high lay-off rate within a similar time span. Some of the significant challenges faced by the industry were:
1. Scarcity of raw materials in the plastic packaging industry:
The plastics industry’s supply networks span the world and are made up of highly calibrated, interconnected linkages. Many supply networks were interrupted as a result of the worldwide shutdown. Long after the first severe shutdown, ships stayed in ports and cargo stacked up in container sheds, causing extraordinary supply and demand oscillations.
2. The lack of investment in research and development:
With the changing technology and consumer behavior worldwide, the packaging industry also required heavy investment for its research and development to go far and beyond according to the changing nature of demand during covid. The packaging businesses that are able to act with foresight and adjust their processes spontaneously if required prevailed in these times.
3. Lack of resources to invest in innovation:
Throughout the pandemic, people’s attitudes toward packaging have shifted. During the initial lockdown, its essential function as a “first line of defense” to secure our products was questioned. Many people are asking if packaging can genuinely be a super-spreader.’ Therefore, the Packaging industry has to take a number of careful precautions due to this anxiety, and the packaging industry’s integrity was a question in the meantime.
The outbreak of Covid-19 has heightened customers’ fundamental packaging demands for safety, trust, and the confidence that comes with it. It has uncovered numerous connected consumer follies and concerns, which are far from scientific realities but have been ingrained as consumer truths, necessitating a response in more hygienic forms of packaging.
It has also accelerated the development of online shopping and e-commerce, which appeals to individuals who may choose to purchase in the future in more convenient and reassuringly distant ways. Packaging that is primarily designed for on-shelf display in traditional retail channels is lagging behind. The covid-19 outbreak has taken a toll on the packaging industry and demands more innovation and safety than ever. The only companies that survived this jolt were those able to transition by all means, and Polybol has been one of them.