You don’t get to be the leader in the industry without having a signature style. No other company knows this better than Apple. From an iPhone in its setup box to an iMac’s handled container, Apple’s strict packaging requirements are part of what makes their product seem so luxurious. The Apple aesthetic–reflected in their store and iOS–is marked by simplicity.
It’s no mistake that many other brands seem to mimic the aesthetic. Who doesn’t want to experience the benefit of the halo effect? Selling a product in a minimalist white box is enough to evoke the Apple mystique for consumers. But it’s more than just that. Whether you’re getting ready to launch a Kickstarter or redesigning your current packaging, here are some tips from the experts via FastCoDesign.
White setup box
This is the cornerstone. White is the signature color, and the setup box (think the iPhone box) turns opening a new phone into an unveiling ceremony. Well, as long as you’re not this guy.
Setup boxes are two piece boxes with rigid top and bottom trays. The inside can be customized to fit your product, and finishing options can enhance the experience for your customers. Following the white aesthetic (or, if you must, choosing a single color for the package) also helps reduce the number of decisions to make…which can be a major stress point for any product manufacturer.
Product should be the focus of the design
One of the most striking things about most of Apple’s packaging is the large image against a stark background. The product is always the focus of the design. Apple might use the screen in an interesting way, using it to showcase the graphics or interface of the product, but that’s about it.
While you don’t ever see a stack of Apple products at their retail stores, you know simply by looking at the packaging that there is a symmetry to the box. This helps the proportions *feel* right to consumers, even though they probably can’t put their finger on what it is that’s so pleasing.
Let’s deconstruct the text on the iPad box. The lid has a picture of the iPad screen. The end of the box features the Apple logo. The sides say, ‘iPad.’ And that’s basically it. Again, the product is the focus of the design. Many product developers focus on telling people why they should purchase this product while Apple shows consumers the product, and leaves the selling to other outlets. This is a box that answers the question What’s in the box, not Why should I buy it.
From an optimistic standpoint, if you are hoping that your product is picked up for Apple distribution, you can use their guidelines to plan for a smooth transition. Note that this style isn’t for every product; sometimes you do need a little more text, more color to stand out, or just prefer an asymmetrical style. Follow your instincts, and create packaging that makes you as proud as your product does.