How coffee packaging design changes can impact sales

Lebo Matshego
February 10, 2023
An image of a coffee consumer holding up two examples of coffee packaging design in an article on how coffee packaging design changes impact sales

Packaging design is a critical component of any coffee business’ marketing strategy. 

While the bag itself plays a crucial role in keeping coffee beans fresh, its design communicates a brand aesthetic and personality. 

Most importantly, packaging design helps customers instantly identify a product, which, in time builds customer loyalty. 

Therefore, any changes to the design of coffee packaging must be carefully considered, as they can have a drastic effect on a business. 

To learn more about the importance of communicating coffee packaging design changes to customers, I spoke with the co-owner of Manaka Coffee in Johannesburg, Phumlani Sibeko.

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Why change the design of coffee packaging?

Occasionally, factors of a business require a refresh, and packaging design is no exception. 

A simple change in coffee bag design, such as altering the colour of the bag or its font, can positively impact sales.

As long as it is in line with the company’s brand corporate identity, an updated coffee bag design may attract new customers while building on brand loyalty from existing ones. 

Many roasters choose to update their coffee packaging when launching new blends. 

“Usually, when roasters enter the market, their coffee bag design includes a simple-textured bag with a sticker of their brand name,” says Phumlani, who is also the head roaster at Manaka Coffee. 

“A great time to change coffee bag design is to mark the reinvention of the brand and product,” he adds. “This is typically done as the brand grows and introduces new blends.”

A brand refresh may also be needed to keep up with contemporary trends when the roastery reaches a milestone, such as an anniversary.

“I think changing your coffee packaging design every five to six years is good enough to reflect your brand reinvention,” Phumlani explains. 

“If roasters change their coffee packaging too often, it may work against their brand awareness and profit maximising strategies. Too many changes can create customer confusion about the brand’s identity and what it stands for,” he adds. 

Ultimately, when a business matures, its aesthetic matures along with it. The right changes to coffee packaging design will help to ensure roasters remain relevant within the market and with both potential and existing customers.

An image of a coffee roaster or coffee shop barista interacting with a customer to show changes in coffee packaging design in an article on how coffee packaging design changes impact sales

Communicating coffee packaging design changes to customers

Humans are hardwired to resist change.

That said, with adequate preparation and engagement, roasters can help customers adapt to new packaging designs while maintaining brand recognition. 

Most importantly, informing customers of coffee bag design changes should be in your overall packaging redesign strategy. 

For example, roasters can use social media platforms to convey a countdown to the rollout of a new coffee bag design. 

Additionally, they can introduce new bags through local cafes to show customers as they place their coffee orders.

One of the most engaging ways to communicate packaging changes is to include customers along the journey through design competitions. 

“Coffee bag design competitions are fantastic for including the customer and artists that want to work with your brand,” explains Phumlani.

“You can post the best designs on your brand’s social media channels and ask customers to vote. In this way, you involve your customer on the coffee package design journey in a fun and interactive way,” he adds.

An image of two multilayer coffee bags with custom-printing in an article on how coffee packaging design changes impact sales

What to consider when making changes to coffee packaging design

Roasters need to consider several factors in coffee packaging design changes.

These include design aesthetics, colour, and coffee packaging structures.

The physical coffee bag should be durable enough to protect the coffee beans and keep them fresh as they make their way to the customer.

The redesigned bag should also be aesthetically pleasing so that it remains distinct from competitors and continues to attract customers. 

“The redesigned coffee bags should be of great quality,” Phumlani advises. He suggests roasters consider adding a ‘classy’ texture, such as velvet to the coffee bag. 

“A velvet-textured coffee bag is less likely to fold or crinkle when customers touch it,” he adds. 

It is also important to consider how the redesign will look across the shape of the coffee bag, and whether the structure will have to be changed. 

For example, side gusset coffee pouches are a fantastic option for a coffee bag redesign. The front of the bag is spacious enough to accommodate artwork, while the sides can also be fully customised.

Colour and legible font make all the difference to the overall design of a coffee bag. Notably, colour signifies a variety of messages to the customer. 

Therefore, it is best if the redesigned coffee bag fits into the company’s corporate identity to maintain a consistent brand tone and trust with customers.

“Generally, I recommend minimalistic yet classic colour changes when redesigning your coffee packaging,” Phumlani says. “Personally, I prefer the cream white, black, and brown hues as these are ever-green and classic colours.” he adds.

Changes in coffee packaging design can maximise sales, as they are a strategic aspect of marketing. 

A packaging redesign that is well done can attract new customers and remind existing customers why they fell in love with their favourite coffee brand.  

Partnering with a superior packaging manufacturer that understands the roasters’ needs can make packaging design changes much easier. 

MTPak Coffee can help balance your budget and business personality with custom-printed coffee packaging that is sure to get the attention of both new and existing customers.

MTPak Coffee offers roasters and coffee shops a range of 100% recyclable coffee packaging options that can be custom-printed to your business specifications.

Our range of coffee packaging structures includes quad seal bags, stand-up pouches, side gusset coffee bags, and more.

Furthermore, we offer a range of customisable coffee boxes made from 100% recycled cardboard. These are ideal options for roasters who wish to test out a new design without overwhelming customers.

Choose from renewable materials such as kraft paper, rice paper, or multilayer LDPE packaging with an environmentally friendly PLA lining.

Take control over the design process by building your own coffee bag. We use innovative digital printing technology to ensure your custom-printed coffee packaging is a perfect representative of your brand.

We offer a quick turnaround time of 40-hours and 24-hour shipping time, and low minimum order quantities (MOQs) to micro-roasters who are looking to remain agile while showcasing a commitment to sustainability.

For more information on how to effectively rollout coffee packaging design changes, contact our team.

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Lebo Matshego
Lebo Matshego

Lebo is a writer for MTPak Coffee and is very passionate about her craft.

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