I know, I know, packaging is super important to make the sale . But when they already purchased my drill bit holder online – it is in fact already sold.
Lowest shipping cost
To post my invention I use an extremely light weight plastic envelope that looks like crap. However, if someone orders just one Gearfix I can post it to every corner of the world at the same price as an ordinary post card.
Tipping the scales
If someone buys two or more drill bit holders online the shipping cost doesn’t change. And for larger orders, when it doesn’t affect my shipping expenses, I some times add a bonus Gearfix just for fun.
The cheap plastic envelope is the opposite of fancy. In case any customer happens to get offended by the packaging I imagine filling it with an unexpected bonus product will take their mind off the crappy container.
I still wasn’t sure if Gearfix eventually had to be manufactured in Asia. So I chose to just claim the value of ”Swedish design”.
Saving by spending
I had an order for ”only” a few thousand units. But it was much more economic to buy the printed material in bulk. For a little more money, I ordered 20.000 extra paper labels with the print -”Swedish design”. This also turned out to be a good move when the drunk & brawling packaging service started to trash my stuff.
I figured that if my gadget had to be manufactured in Asia, the labels would still be usable. How ever, the boxes were made in a very limited edition and got the more prestigious print -”Made in Sweden”.
Most inventions never leave the drawing board so I love giving my work stupid names. It’s fun and in the early stages of development I can spend my time developing the actual product rather than what to call it.
When my invention got rid of the flashlight and became a better product I had to abandon the “Lamp” in Lampowitz. Just days after the first order I put my sister and her husband to quickly brainstorm a suitable brand name. They are professionals but did it for free of course.
Stupid & sexy
Apart from a wide range of sexy- perverted- kinky- rubber- latex- associated words they finally came up with an English word that works fine in Sweden so there was no problem naming it “Gearfix” with the catch phrase –“Keeps your gear in control”.
It might not be perfect that the gearfix.com domain was taken. But I was so pleased with Gearfix and my goal was to sell it in stores, not the web, so the domain issue didn’t bother me too much. My former experience managing a web shop taught me having a great domain name isn’t crucial any way.
Product presentation was essential and I thought it was a nice idea to place the products in neat rows, divided by paper sheets as in the chocolate-candy boxes. The problem with this was, apart from the time it took to pack, the boxes only held 90 products.
What the hell?
If you haven’t figured it out yet, this made it rather tricky handling my first order for 5.000 units. I realized this in the last minute and eventually sent them 56 boxes (56 boxes x 90 units = 5.040 products). I didn’t dare to charge for the extra 40 units.
I certainly didn’t want to embarrass myself but I had to point out this mistake to the retailer. Otherwise their computer data would get messed up not having the correct amount of products in stock. It doesn’t feel good to be a hassle for your first and most important customer.
Later when I visited some of the stores the paper sheets, supposed to make everything look exclusively designed were anything but fancy. Crumbling paper were spread all over the place making the designed boxes look like trash bins.
It was an important learning experience to have gone through this ordeal. Now I knew what I needed, got rid of the dividing paper sheets and I even found plastic strings for half the price and re-designed my boxes to hold 100 Gearfix units each. But there were dark clouds summoning ahead.