How to Choose a Box Style for Your Subscription Box Packaging

Posted on April 23, 2018 by Marketing Fantastapack
Subscription Box Packaging Mailer Box Styles
Choosing the Best Box for Your Product

When it comes to subscription box packaging, not all boxes are created equal. Choosing the right box style for your particular product mix and the needs of your customer is an important first step in creating an effective and memorable packaging experience. For subscription businesses, your box serves two purposes: you must protect your product through the shipping voyage so that it arrives safely at your customer’s doorstep, and you want to provide the best product presentation to keep your subscription base coming back for more.


Subscription Box Packaging: Common Box Styles

Subscription brands most often use mailer boxes to ship their product. Mailer boxes come in a handful of common styles – let’s explore the differences and benefits of each:


Roll-End Front Tuck (REFT)

Roll End Front Tuck Mailer Box
This is one of the most common mailer box styles. Roll-end describes the rounded flaps that are engineered to tuck smoothly into the front of the box (see how that works?) for secure closure, and out again for easy opening. It’s the tuck that provides product security, and why this style is the go-to for valuable items. In addition to product security, the REFT offers a nice unboxing experience and its dimensions can be customized to accommodate a variety of products.

Roll-End Front Tuck with Dust Flaps (REFT with DF)

Roll End Front Tuck Dust Flaps Mailer Box
Sometimes referred to as an ear-lock mailer or simply shorthanded to “mailer box.” This is hands-down the box of choice for subscription box packaging. That’s because this box style delivers all of the convenience and presentation of the basic REFT box but adds in the power of dust flaps: those additional flaps that tuck into the top of the box along the sides. Dust flaps form a second shield to keep dust, dirt, and other elements that your box may encounter in warehouses, trucks, and other shipping environments from reaching your product. Useful for keeping things clean, dust flaps also boost structural integrity and deliver a sense of quality to the end-user.

Econo Roll-End Front Tuck (Econo REFT)

Econo REFT Mailer Box
When the width and depth of your REFT or subscription box are the same dimensions (or very similar), consider switching over to the Econo REFT. Why? The Econo REFT box design has been optimized for the most effective use of material space (up to 30% less waste than a traditional REFT). The closer your dieline looks to a perfect rectangle, the less material (and less expensive) your box will be.

Roll-End Tuck Top (RETT)

Roll End Tuck Top Mailer Box

An easy-to-access style, the Roll-End Tuck Top is also aptly named. The front flap tucks simply into the top of the box rather than continuing over the edge. Slightly rounded corners make opening and closing easy. This box style feels more like a retail display during unboxing and later use. Without the front tuck for security, you’ll want to add some type of security seal. This is a great chance to leverage a branding opportunity with a custom sticker to put a finishing touch on your box presentation.


Shipping Considerations

The style of your box should balance economy with the appropriate level of protection for your product. For example, if you ship delicate tissue-wrapped clothing right in the box then extra protection against dust and dirt is a high priority. Alternatively, if you ship arts and craft supplies that are made of tougher stuff, a simpler box may do just fine. Once you pack your product and ship it out to your customer base, your boxes will potentially travel on truck, through distribution centers, and by hand to ultimately be dropped at the end-user’s doorstep. These environments can put any package to the test! Think about the specific needs of your product and the potential hazards of the shipping process to guide your choice in box style.


Explore Your Options

When you’re ready to take a closer look, Fantastapack can help you create the perfect box for your brand. Learn more about each of the style options available here.

Shop Subscription Boxes

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