DS Smith just launched a 3D-adaptable packaging for the e-commerce supply chain, a solution able to minimize the size and cut associated costs by up to 60%.
This new technology is called Made2fit and is based on three available sizes of cardboard sheet enabling the manual creation of a total of 33 different box sizes in a quick and easy way.
All in all, a correctly-sized pack at lower costs, reducing both operational and shipping costs by saving storage space, cutting labour costs, order administration, assembly and packing times. Basically, Made2fit is estimated to reduce void fill by 80% on average, and to achieve a potential cost saving of 30% on inbound and outbound shipping. Moreover, it significantly reduces product movement, helping to reduce damage.
Isabel Rocher, Head of E-Commerce solutions at DS Smith, said: “Made2fit has been developed to make a large difference to our small and medium-sized business customers. We’ve taken our knowledge from working with large, global e-commerce firms, to help smaller companies reduce costs and streamline processes and administration. The aim is that this will allow these retailers to focus on what’s important – developing and marketing great products.”
“At the same time, the product is aimed at delivering a great end-user experience which enhances their impression of the retailer’s brand. Right-sized packaging shows that a brand has a focus on sustainability and avoiding waste and means retail customers don’t need to dispose of void fill. The boxes are also easy to open, and simple to return if the products consumers have purchased aren’t suitable.”
Made2fit will now be available in the UK, Germany, France and Benelux. An automated version of Made2fit is also being created for larger volume orders, with the ability to manufacture more than 10 million box size combinations.
Described as an “industry first”, DS Smith’s DISCS tests whether packages can “survive the bumps and scrapes of the average e-commerce supply chain”. Named after the different types of testing the packages will undergo (Drop Impact Shock Crush Shake); DISCS consists of five pieces of equipment which each replicating a part of the product journey.
Isabel Rocher also commented: “Finding the balance between protecting packaging and limiting the amount of materials used is a constant source of concern for retailers. Likewise, shoppers do not want to receive broken goods or have to deal with excess packaging. Our new DISCS technology enables us to scientifically assess our customers’ requirements and get this balance right.”
There are three test levels for customers to choose from, depending on whether a package is delivered straight to customer first time, delivered and returned or delivered with three failed attempts and then returned. This final option can include up to 50 touchpoints, and DS Smith says it “replicates the most severe damage a pack can receive”. Over the next 12 months three testing suites will be opened, based in the UK, France and Germany.