How to generate more sales through the unboxing experience

Don’t you just love it when you get a gift? There are many, many reasons to enjoy a good gift, for example:

  1. The surprise element. As Forrest Gump said: “you never know what you’re gonna get”.
  2. They are a material token that represents the fact that someone else cares about you and thinks about you.
  3. Unwrapping presents makes you feel like a happy kid all over again.

When it comes to eCommerce, all 3 reasons still apply when a customer buys a gift for someone else.

However, as you probably know, a LOT of the products from online sales are purchased by the buyer, for the buyer. And when that happens, reasons A and B kind of go out the window — but that doesn’t mean you won’t love it when you buy something for yourself.

And that is mostly because of reason C: feeling like a happy kid. When we buy something for ourselves, we not only feel good because we have acquired something (though, of course, that is certainly part of it). The main reason for that “happy kid” feeling is due to the delightful experience of opening our purchase. Over the last few years, this has become a phenomenon known as “Unboxing”, and that is precisely what this article is all about.

Is unboxing really that big a deal?

In short, Yes. There are entire channels on YouTube dedicated to unboxing stuff. And while some of them add a review of the product, the majority of unboxing channels are simply there to show how it feels to unbox something, and they have millions and millions of views.

You read that right — there are millions of people who go on YouTube specifically to watch someone ELSE open a product they bought…a product that the viewer does not own, and maybe will never own. Don’t believe us? take a look at this consumer insight. In short: the viewers are just there to experience the ride. That is how huge unboxing has become.

At first, the unboxing craze was mostly for tech products, with Apple being one of the most commonly used brands for unboxing videos. But unboxing quickly expanded its horizons, and now there are popular unboxing videos for almost any item you can think of: cosmetics, sneakers, perfumes, clothes, etc.

OK, so unboxing is a big deal…but why should I invest precious resources on something that happens AFTER I’ve already made the sale?

Though Robin is right about the timing of the unboxing experience, his conclusion is utterly and absolutely wrong. Sadly, the kind of narrow, short-sighted thinking that got Robin slapped is actually quite common in business in general, and eCommerce in particular.

Why is it narrow and short-sighted? Well, for starters, providing a top-notch unboxing experience will drastically increase the chance that your business gets a recommendation AND/OR repeat sales. It is also a wonderful marketing tool and will enhance brand loyalty. Additionally, Robin is ignoring all the benefits that your customers will get from a great unboxing experience:

  • That emotional ride that all the millions of viewers of unboxing videos crave…except this time they even get to keep the stuff!
  • Something to still look forward to after their package has already been delivered
  • A conversation piece
  • The feeling that you truly care about them and appreciate their business (because you do!)
  • General delight and excitement

To sum it all up: we highly recommend that you give all your customers an outstanding unboxing experience. And what’s more: if possible, show customers on your product pages exactly what they will be getting, including an unboxing video or GIF, to get their imaginations going.

But if I show customers everything on the product pages, including the unboxing process, won’t that completely ruin it?

You are very lucky that my editor has recently imposed on me a strict “one slap per blog post” rule because otherwise, I would be winding up right now. The answer is simple: nope. Showing the unboxing to your customers does not take away anything from the experience… it will ENHANCE it. Because that is how hype works (if you need a refresher on hype, look for Gandhi in this previous blog post). Besides, this will open an opportunity for you to throw in one final surprise with your packaging — a surprise your customers will never expect because they will think that they have already seen everything. And giving them that sneaky surprise, my friends, is even better than winning an Oscar after slapping the shit out of a presenter.

OK, I’m sold! How can I create an incredible unboxing experience?

Well, there is no one-size-fits-all solution. It will depend, among other things, on your brand voice, and what your products are. You should reach out to us, Nice Commerce, for a free consultation, so you can get the ball rolling on your unboxing experience. We are Nice like that.

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