Tag Archives: boxes

Can de-cluttering bring Brits a better life?

The de-cluttering craze is everywhere right now; as the focus of countless self-help books, the mainstay of many organisation gurus – and even the subject of a popular Netflix series. It’s also been the inspiration behind motivational quotes like Marie Kondo’s: “Discard everything that does not spark joy”.

This philosophy is a popular one: the promise that we can maximise our lives with a minimalist lifestyle. But, by putting our old belongings into cardboard boxes and bidding them farewell, can we really put more meaning into our lives?

We wanted to find out what Brits make of this movement, and whether they’ve felt a benefit from a purge of their possessions. To do this, we surveyed over 1,000 respondents on their attitudes to de-cluttering food, fashion and technology products in their homes.

How much are Brits wasting on food, fashion and technology?

RAJA de-cluttering: How much do Brits waste per year

First, we had to determine if there was a need to de-clutter. The answer? Yes.

We found that, on average, Brits are wasting a quarter of the food, fashion and technology items that they buy in one year.

Altogether, that’s over £400 that could be spent elsewhere (and that’s not including the space they could be saving, too!). How would you feel about an all-inclusive weekend away, giving more generously to charity or simply splashing out on family and friends? There are plenty of ways you could use this spare cash – and all without accumulating any waste.

On the topic of waste, what, if anything, are Brits doing with their old belongings? We discovered that 19% (almost one in five Brits!) do not de-clutter at all – which is 5.2M if we applied this figure across all over-16’s in Britain. Do many of us simply hold the habits of a hoarder, or is there another reason we cannot let go?

Why are we holding onto our old belongings?

One of the main reasons that respondents said they didn’t de-clutter is because they’re emotionally attached to their belongings (20% of Brits say so). For many of us, our sense of self is wrapped up in our possessions. Whether our ‘things’ remind us of past relationships or help bring back fond memories of childhood, the sentimental value of certain items often outweighs the cost. Surprisingly, more millennials hold emotional attachments to their belongings than other generations, going against the assumption that they choose experiences over “things”.

Finally, not fully understanding how to dispose of or recycle our food, fashion and tech is a major factor that stops us from saying goodbye to our things. Over half of the British public (51%) say they don’t know how to confidently dispose of their tech, crowning this as the most complex thing to de-clutter correctly, followed by fashion (41%) and food (38%).

How can we breathe new life into old belongings?

RAJA de-cluttering: What do Brits do with their old belongings

And yet, 4 in 5 of us do de-clutter – so what are we doing with our “stuff”?

It turns out Brits are a charitable lot, with over half of respondents (55%) donating their pre-loved possessions to charities and over a quarter of them (26%) are handing down their belongings to friends and family.

Brits are crafty with their possessions, too. We found out that 37% either recycle or upcycle their products –both of which help your belongings go further for longer. Recycling helps turn waste into a reusable material or product, while upcycling turns waste into something of a higher quality than before. Whether it’s turning a ladder into a bookshelf or restoring a bicycle to get it back on the road, many of us are breathing new life into old belongings – and pocketing ourselves with some profit to boot.

Our findings showed that 3 in 10 people are profiting from a side hustle by selling their old belongings, with almost three quarters of 35-54-year olds getting rid of their things this way. With popular selling sites such as eBay, Amazon and GumTree, as well as product-specific sites such as Depop, MusicMagpie and Vinted, there’s plenty of avenues to make some money off our belongings.

How does de-cluttering make Brits feel?

RAJA What are Brits' attitude towards de-cluttering

So, how do we feel when we de-clutter? We asked the 80% of people that said they actively de-clutter at least once per year.

Feeling house-proud is somewhat of a fuel for us Brits. Over half of respondents were motivated to dig out their and de-clutter when they wanted to free up some space, with 34% of them doing it to improve the presentation of their homes and 16% taking this task on when moving home.

We asked Brits to tell us the emotions that they felt when fulfilling this duty, and, although 1 in 10 said that it evoked negative feelings such as distress or feeling overwhelmed, the responses were namely positive:

  • 35% said they find de-cluttering to be a therapeutic experience
  • 27% found it rewarding
  • 16% said they de-clutter because it is beneficial to their mental health

When Brits de-clutter their home, they’re also de-cluttering their mind and gaining some emotional benefits.

Want to feel great too? Here are our top tips

Has all of this inspired you to de-clutter your home? Or perhaps you do de-clutter, but are in the quarter of Brits that admit to simply throwing things away when you do? There are many benefits that can come from de-cluttering, and even more so when you do it right.

De-cluttering is a popular trend, but our environment transcends any fads – it’s our future.

With that in mind, here are some of our top tips on how to de-clutter in a way that is sustainable and gives our belongings added life.

RAJA de-cluttering: Almost 20 percent of Brits do not de-clutter their home

So, next time you’re debating whether to de-clutter, consider the benefits that it can have to your wellbeing, your home, the planet (when done properly) and perhaps even your profits. Why not prepare for your next big clear out with our huge range of quality cardboard boxes for all your sorting and storage needs, and the great news is that they’re made from a minimum of 75% recycled contents.

Your guide to choosing the right Strapping

Strapping is an excellent solution for securing shipments during transport or for medium or long-term storage. There are 3 main uses of strapping; to fix to a pallet, to join one parcel to another, and to offer more strength.  It can be used to secure almost anything, from fragile products to bulky loads.

But with so many different types of strapping available, how can you make sure you’re using the right type?  This post will explain exactly how, offering advice and tips on selecting the right strapping for you.

The many uses of strapping

What is strapping?

After a cardboard box has been sealed with tape, even if it is a sturdy cardboard box, strapping can be applied to secure it fully.  It wraps all the way around the parcel, and the join is bonded or welded together to provide a tight, strong seal that can’t easily be broken.

It can easily be applied no matter the package size, on everything from standard size cartons to large export boxes and pallets.  It’s particularly useful when fixing a couple of cartons together – it’s then considered as one parcel so reduces shipping costs.  It’s also ideal for bulky and heavy items, where something stronger than normal packaging tape is needed for a secure fit.

Strapping machines and tools

Strapping can be applied manually using strapping tools or with the use of a strapping machine for a fast and efficient process.  Top tip! If you use a strapping machine no additional tools or seals are required to fasten the strapping, the machine will automatically friction weld the strapping to the seal.

For manual strapping, equipment is required to create tension in the strapping and seal it securely.  For businesses shipping varied products ranging in shape and size, a tensioning tool combined with sealer tool and seal will complete the packing process, and the handy feature of using it vertically means you can reposition yourself for awkward loads.  Combination strapping tools are available which simplify the process combine both a tensioner and sealer into a single tool, to only be used horizontally it makes packing straightforward for securing same-size and shape products, seals are also required.

Palletise your loads using strapping

Hand strapping machines are ideal for a variety of packages; they’re highly versatile for different size and product variations, mobile and can be used vertically and horizontally.

For packaging lines that need to strap large volumes of packages then a strapping machine is highly recommended.  Semi-automatic strapping machines and automatic strapping machines are available, with the high performance automatic machine able to produce up to 65 straps per minute.  They greatly speed up the strapping process by automatically tensioning and sealing the strapping, reducing the time it takes to seal boxes.

How to choose the right strapping for your product

There are several types of strapping available and to get the best results you need to ensure you choose the correct type that offers the benefits needed for your packaging operation.

Here are just a few questions to ask yourself before starting to buy strapping are listed below – these should give you a good idea of the strength and properties of strapping that you’ll need to ensure they support your shipments:

  • What is the application and how do you intend using it?
  • What is the weight, and is it a static or dynamic load?
  • Will the strapped shipments have to withstand any particular weather conditions?
  • Will the strapping be done manually with tools or will it be done automatically with a machine?
  • How far is it going and will long will it be strapped for?

The different kinds of strapping available

We’ve summarised the different types of strapping below, so you can learn the properties and advantages of the different materials, listed in increasing order of resistance.  This should help you make the right decision when buying strapping – and if you’re still not sure, then please do give our team a call on 0800 542 44 28 and we’ll be happy to help.

The different kinds of strapping available

Polypropylene Strapping

PP or polypropylene strapping is very light and versatile, making it ideal for sealing, reinforcing and securing lighter loads.  With elastic properties, it does not deform or corrode and resists bumps and scrapes making it ideal for use on pallets that will be stored for long periods of time or shipped long distances.

PP or polypropylene strapping

It offers a resistance of up to 250kg and its light, plastic properties make it easy to work with. It can be sealed with self-locking plastic buckles and security seals. Top tip! If you are using a manual, automatic or semi-automatic strapping machine, only polypropylene machine strapping can be used.

Polypropylene strapping

Extruded Polyester Strapping

PET or Extruded Polyester Strapping is the strongest type of plastic strapping available, making it ideal for fixing heavier loads and pallets.  Because it’s made from polyester it can be secured very tightly, with a small flex in the material that can be tightened when sealing.

PET or Extruded Polyester Strapping

It has strong resistance to moisture and UV rays which make it ideal for long-term storage where high strength is required for long periods of time.  It offers a resistance of up to 340kg and can be used to replace steel strapping in many situations.   Made from a minimum of 80% recycled materials, it’s more eco-friendly than other strapping materials, and can be sealed using tensioners and sealers.

Extruded polyester strapping kit and dispensers

Steel Strapping

Among the strongest strapping available, steel strapping is tough and perfect for heavy, rigid loads with sharp or rough edges like iron or concrete that won’t compress.  The properties of steel strapping mean that it won’t flex like other materials can do – this is why it’s ideal for solid, bulky loads.  Top tip! Recommended that the person packing wear industrial gloves for protection.

Steel strapping

This super-resistant strapping is ideal for very heavy loads of up to 740kg can be sealed securely with or without seals. This industrial strapping can only be used with steel strapping tensioners, sealers and combination tools.

Steel strapping

Corded Polyester Strapping

The most resistant of strapping materials, corded polyester strapping is ideal for fixing and sealing delicate or fragile products.  Its light, textile material means it’s easy to work with, it won’t rust, rot or mark surfaces, and is best used manually with tensioners and sealers.

Corded polyester strapping

It offers extreme resistance for loads of up to 950kg and is highly resistant to tearing making it ideal for heavy loads.  Also, by dividing it over the length, a knot can be made in the strapping to further increase the security of an item after it’s been sealed.

Corded polyester strapping kit and systerms

If you’d like more information about the strapping we have to offer, manual tools, strapping machines, systems or advice on which strapping is right for your operation, simply get in touch with our team of packaging experts who are on hand to help.

Simply visit www.rajapack.co.uk

Unboxing: thinking outside of the box

Since the legendary Pandora gave into temptation and opened the box, people have been fascinated with the unknown. Curiosity is in our nature, as is seeking out knowledge. One phenomenon that appears to satisfy our curious nature is the unboxing trend sweeping YouTube. Unboxing is the process of capturing a brand new product being opened on video. It sounds simple enough, perhaps even a little mundane, but the interest it’s sparked around the world is fascinating.

Unboxing’s appeal spans all age groups and all cultures. But what is it about watching somebody you don’t know, open something you don’t own? To find out, we’ve collated the statistics, looked at the science and asked three experts in their field why they think this trend has such universal appeal.

How popular is unboxing?

The first recognisable unboxing video was uploaded back in 2006. Titled ‘Unboxing Ceremony of Nokia E61’, this video featured what is now synonymous with the trend – tech unboxing. Since then, unboxing has taken YouTube by storm, with 6.5 years’ worth of unboxing videos uploaded to the site in 2015. The products unboxed cover everything from common tech gadgets to luxury clothing, children’s toys to live reptiles. In fact, if a product is available to buy, there is more than likely an unboxing video to go with it.

In 2014, a YouTube search for the term “unboxing” yielded more than 20 million search results. At the time of writing, the exact same search returned almost 50 million results. The highest earner on YouTube is the owner of a channel dedicated to unboxing Disney toys. DC Toys Collector is estimated to have earned $4.9 million in 2014[i] and has absolutely no affiliation with Disney.

The third most popular YouTube channel, by views, belongs to unboxer FunToyzCollector, with a view count of over 11.6 billion.[ii] The channel’s most popular video alone racked up a staggering 499,514,454 views, putting it at number 155 on the list of most watched YouTube videos ever.[iii]

RAJA unboxing

Why is unboxing so popular?

The appeal of unboxing videos can be explained by our capacity for empathy. Humans have the capability to put themselves in someone else’s place. Research has identified responses in the brain called “anticipation circuits”, and it’s these that begin to fire in our own brains when we watch a stranger unbox something. This discovery was made by accident in 1992.

Since then more studies have been undertaken at different laboratories that have verified the existence of what has been called the “mirror neuron system”. These neurons activate not only when we perform an action ourselves, but also when we watch someone else perform that action.[iv]

Unsurprisingly, this goes a long way in explaining the universal fascination with unboxing videos. As we watch someone else carefully removing the gift packaging, our brain acts as though we’re the one performing the action. We spoke to psychologist Diana Parkinson, who described unboxing to us as, “…totally voyeuristic, there is no material reward, only transitory visual reward. The popularity of unboxing videos is astonishing, and I cannot think of a comparison.”

the-mystery-deal-box-youtube-4-2

Source: Unbox Therapy

Unboxing as entertainment

To delve deeper into this, we asked vlogger Chase Aimee what she thought of unboxing videos. For her, some of the appeal lies in seeing something she may purchase herself, “The appeal lies in seeing a bag I might be interested in and experiencing the unboxing with the individual. Usually, there’s a story that goes with it (how the bag was decided upon, etc.) and a little bit about the experience of buying it. It helps me to make more informed buying decisions and is also just as exciting seeing something beautiful being unwrapped. Luxury design houses spend a fortune on their packaging so it’s all part of the experience.”

We also asked popular parent blogger Rachel, who writes the blog ‘Coffee, cake, kids’, about why she believes her children enjoy unboxing videos so much. “I think it is because every time it’s a surprise. They tune into a child’s natural curiosity to see what’s in the box – the kids love looking in the bags when I come home from the supermarket – it’s just nosiness. The very few videos that I’ve sat and watched are all very bright and colourful, which of course attracts young children.”

Rachel also commented on how, for her, unboxing videos are perfect for keeping children entertained. “They’re relatively easy to find, generally safe for kids to watch and when you need five minutes peace to go and make the dinner, they’re perfect for keeping them amused.”

Director of the Media Psychology Research Centre, Pamela Rutledge, believes that, for children, unboxing videos could actually be beneficial. “For kids, handing them a toy ice cream parlour [for example]—it’s already done the work for you. There’s no imagination, no building, thinking, creativity, or problem-solving,” she continues. “With these videos and other games, there’s learning: How are they putting it together? How are they using the Play-Doh? How are they making different creations? We have a negative understanding of acting vicariously in our society—that you’re not doing your own living, [unboxing] is a different thing. It’s more of an exploratory learning process.”[v]

minnie-works-at-mcdonalds-cash-register-%e2%9d%a4-peppa-pig-happy-meal-toys-surp-2

Source: FunToyzCollector

Packaging is as important as the product

Packaging induces a sense of empathy in viewers of unboxing videos. As mentioned before, the science suggests we get a similar experience watching somebody else carefully unwrap a package, as we would if we were doing it ourselves. This experience can be capitalised on by brands with clever use of gift packaging.

One of the most popular genres of unboxing video is ‘luxury products’. Exclusive brands, such as Chanel, invest in high-end packaging because they realise the opening is as important as the final reveal of the product. And, this is true whether the item is being opened in private or shared with billions on the web.

For a truly immersive unboxing experience, the packaging not only needs to look attractive, but it should also feel and sound pleasant as well. The feel of satin ribbons being untied, the sleek sound of tabs being opened and the crinkle of tissue paper being unwrapped are just a few things that have an instant effect on the viewer.

These, combined with considering how deep the box or bag should be, all contribute to the overall experience of being able to fully explore the contents. In an era of online shopping, the anticipation of receiving and opening an item is almost as important as eventual gratification.

This idea is discussed in the New York Times bestseller Buyology: How everything we believe about why we buy is wrong. Authored by Martin Lindstrom, the book discusses the many subconscious effects that take place during the buying process. Lindstrom comments that brands should be making the packaging of their products as interesting as the items within.

Our unboxing vlogger Chase Aimee backed this up. We asked her if the packaging of an item was important during the experience. “I think it does matter. I’ve had very expensive bags delivered to me in simple packaging before which has been underwhelming! If the item is packaged beautifully, then that certainly makes an impact – it adds to the whole experience and can make you even more excited about the bag. The best packaging is thoughtful, practical and recyclable! If there is a hint of luxury, then even better.”

Rachel, our parenting blogger, believes the packaging is also an important factor for children. “We get a lot of parcels and deliveries, and the kids are all so excited to open them and see what’s inside. We get a food subscription box, and they go nuts every month to help me open it! It’s the promise of something exciting inside, especially if it’s unknown!”

unboxing

Source: Unbox Therapy

Unboxing as marketing?

For brands, this trend is doubly important, and there are already a number of companies getting in on the act. Brands, such as Disney, are starting to leverage the power of these videos for themselves. Disney recently held a live 18-hour unboxing marathon on YouTube culminating in the release of its new range of Star Wars toys.

This marathon campaign created a storm on social media, and this probably won’t be the last unboxing PR stunt of its type. These videos are getting millions or sometimes billions of views, brands should be seeing these viewers as their potential customers. Psychologist Diana Parkinson recognises the importance of unboxing videos for brands, “It’s the best, and cheapest form of advertising ever! These videos make us drool and desire what may well be unattainable.”

The importance of unboxing videos for brands is of equal value to word-of-mouth marketing. The ever-growing popularity of online customer reviews and the importance of influencers as brand advocates is something brands can no longer ignore.

A study conducted in the U.S. found that 61% of internet users made a point of reading customer reviews online before deciding whether to make the purchase.[vi] Customer reviews are clearly influential to potential customers. Unboxing videos – which are essentially customer reviews in a visual format – offer an unbiased view and element of authenticity to the products featured, which in turn could lead to more sales.

[i] http://uk.businessinsider.com/dc-toys-collector-youtube-2015-1?r=US&IR=T

[ii] http://socialblade.com/youtube/top/100/mostviewed

[iii] https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLirAqAtl_h2r5g8xGajEwdXd3x1sZh8hC

[iv] http://www.dotcomdist.com/benefits-of-custom-retail-packaging-and-unboxing-videos

[v] http://mentalfloss.com/uk/psychology/36931/why-are-we-obsessed-with-unboxing-videos

[vi] https://econsultancy.com/blog/9366-ecommerce-consumer-reviews-why-you-need-them-and-how-to-use-them/

The search is on for 10 Rajapack Animal Protectors!

This winter, people up and down the UK will be working hard to give vulnerable animals the food, shelter and care they need. To celebrate their great work, we’ve started to search for ten amazing people to be named Rajapack Animal Protectors!

rajapack-animal-protectors-3

Our top Animal Protectors will win an exciting Reward Box. These special boxes will be tailored to the winner and filled with £100 worth of products to help them continue caring for animals. Inside could be anything from animal feed or wellies to scratching posts and grooming brushes; it’s up to our winners to decide which pet products can help them continue doing their fantastic work.

How do the awards work?

If you know a person or organisation who has gone out of their way to care for animals, then head over to the Animal Protectors nomination page and tell us why they deserve to win.

No creature is too great or small to need protection, so we’d love to hear stories about people who care for any animal from butterflies to bulldogs or birds of prey, however we can only accept entries for non-profit organisations. So you can nominate an individual, charity or sanctuary, but not a vet or pet groomer.

Rewarding protection

It may seem strange for a leading packaging company to honour Animal Protectors, but as our products are used to protect valuable items, we admire others who take protection as seriously as we do. Last winter we teamed up with Tiggywinkles, the world’s busiest wildlife hospital, to build Hector the hedgehog a house. We raised over £350 for the charity and also donated £220 worth of stationery to their busy offices. As part of our core values we look to always put something back into society and this is one way we can make a difference.

It’s easy to nominate your Animal Protector today

If you know someone who deserves a big thank you for their great work, why not take five minutes now to nominate them and make sure they get the recognition they deserve.