Order fulfillment isn’t just about protecting your items in transit: It’s a valuable opportunity to make a great impression on your customers!

For eCommerce brands, a personalized experience is key to inspiring brand loyalty. This makes your packaging a brilliant customer retainment strategy in its own right - if you give it the attention to deserves!

Artist Alija Horvat knows first-hand how a great unboxing experience can make a world of difference to consumer perceptions. In this episode of ‘How I Fulfill’, Alja takes us through her packaging process and how she uses her custom tissue paper to delight customers.

(In Alja’s own words):

I'm a 22-year-old from Slovenia and I loved everything related to creating and art since I was a child. My mom had hundreds of art magazines at home, and I remember I was always looking for a new DIY project to do. I always had a pencil in my hands!

I started illustrating when I was still studying at the university. While I attended graphic design school we didn't draw at all, and I really missed drawing! That is how I started. I'm a very nostalgic person, and I want people to feel the nostalgia of past years (the 60s and 70s) when they look at my illustrations. I hope my illustrations remind them of a certain time in their life.

Q: Take us through the steps of your order fulfillment; has this process changed over time for you?

A: The process changed so much over the last year. The more products you ship, the better you know how to package certain products so they don't arrive damaged. Sometimes no matter how much you try to protect the products, something will happen along the line that is not your fault, but you really want to minimize the chances!

1) I wrap the art print with the wrapping paper from noissue and "glue" it together with a sticker
2) I write a lovely message on a "Thank you" card - to thank my customers!
3) I put bubble wrap inside the box for extra protection
4) Sometimes I even wrap the box with protection foil, in case the package comes into contact with water

Q: What role does your noissue packaging play in your order fulfillment? How do you think it improves the customer experience?

A: I believe in adding a personal touch to your brand - from my own experience, I know how happy I am when I get a well-curated package! I really try to do my best when I package my orders, and custom tissue paper from noissue really adds a nice touch to the whole experience.

It's so different when you receive a package with a branded wrapping paper and custom stickers and a lovely thank-you card, rather than receiving a "blank" package with your products. When you receive a package from a brand that has worked hard on its packaging and is personalized, you feel so much more special!

Q: What are some challenges you have faced in the fulfillment process? How have you addressed these?

A: Art prints are really hard to ship - I started with "do not bend" envelopes which turned out to be a bad idea - postmen were actually bending them and putting them into the mailboxes! As you can imagine, a few of the art prints arrived bent and damaged. After a lot of trial and error, I realized that boxes and tubes are the best for sending our prints. For example, A4 prints can be sent inside boxes, and A3 prints are better sent in tubes.

Q: What is one piece of advice you would give to other small businesses about order fulfillment?

A: Make your packaging as personal and special as possible - customers will love that!

Enjoyed this piece? Check out the rest of our 'How I Fulfill' series!