A package has several touch points before reaching your end customer, so it’s important to ensure your packaging is fit to hold up through transit to avoid damage.
To claim insurance in the event your package is damaged, your packaging needs to comply with packaging standards set by the carrier and show that care has been taken in order to protect the goods.
We strongly recommend checking the packaging guidelines of the carrier you’re using to ensure you’re covered but have also provided our packaging recommendations below.
Here are some key tips to follow to ensure things reach your end customer safe and intact!
Key tips for packaging
- Choose strong, fitting and durable packaging based on product type not journey type. Choose packing tape that is at least 38mm wide
- Void fill. Don't leave dead space in the satchel or carton
- Layer internally. Protect your items as much as possible internally, the more protective layers the better
- Don't tape items together. Boxes and items should not be taped together. Each individual item requires its own shipping label. Items that have been taped together will not be covered in the event it comes apart and goes missing
- Goods are handled manually very minimally, so make sure your packaging does the work and do not rely on fragile stickers as machines don't capture these
- Label correctly. Remove any old labels and ensure the correct label can be read
- Don't cover or crease shipping labels. No tape should be placed over the barcodes as this will prevent them from being scanned. Packages will not be accepted if the label can not be scanned
- Ensure all dangerous goods are pre-approved for shipping and are labelled correctly. You will need to provide the correct labels & documentation for each DG shipment otherwise surcharges will apply. Do not ship DG unless you are pre-approved
- Remind your customers to keep hold of damaged goods to take pictures of the damage. Without proof of damaged goods you’ll be unable to make a claim
- Cover yourself - enable Shippit Transit Protection!
How to best package fragile items
Fragile goods are items considered easily breakable and demand additional care during shipping. These types of items include but are not limited to:
- musical instruments
- electrical equipment
- wood homewares
- ceramic homewares
- wood furniture
- delicate furniture
- delicate goods
- artwork, canvases
Note: glass products are not covered by Shippit Transit Protection and most couriers.
Internal packaging for fragile items
- Pad/wrap each internal item separately using bubble wrap, protective film, or double-wall cardboard sheets
- Void fill to avoid movement with foam peanuts, airbag cushioning, crumpled paper, or use poly bubble mailers
- Use corner protectors where possible (eg 2" thick styrofoam placed around edging allowing 5cm between the contents and outer packaging)
- Cover in a final layer of bubble wrap or protective film to protect the carton
- Artwork or canvases should be placed in either a cylindrical case, or flat wooden casing depending on material requirements.
Examples of sufficient internal packaging:
- Layers of protective packaging both internally and externally
Examples of insufficient external packaging:
- Insufficient packaging internally to protect the item
External packaging for fragile items
- High-quality cardboard boxes (eg double or triple ply)
- Protective inserts to stop goods from moving around and protect from external indentation (eg foam peanuts, foam insert, corner protectors, bubble wrap)
- User-proper sealing tap (eg strong, durable, and waterproof)
- Fragile and/or Do Not Bend stickers
Examples of sufficient external packaging:
- Very protective packaging visible both internally and externally
- Strong tape to seal shut & identify as fragile
Examples of insufficient external packaging:
- Tape is not sufficient to protect the goods and seal shut
- No visible internal packaging to protect goods in the event of external damage (no corners protectors or edging)
How to best package liquids
Any item that can spill product whilst in transit is considered a liquid. This includes but not limited to:
- wine & alcohol
Our partner, Australia Post has a knowledgeable guide available which shows how to best package bottled goods. You can check it out online here and we recommend this packaging as a sufficient method to shipping liquid goods.
How to best package non fragile goods
Satchels are a very cost-effective option for the right type of goods and bubble poly mailers are available for extra protection. Remember when using satchels to:
- Don't over pack the satchel. Trying to fit too much in a satchel might cause it to burst open during transit.
- Seal shut securely. Fold over the satchel if the contents don't fill the entire satchel space. Using extra tape will ensure any un-stuck folds don't get stuck to anything else and tear open.
What can’t be shipped in satchels:
- Heavy, fragile, or breakable items
Boxes & Cartons
Remember the carton itself is an external barrier only and needs to be strong and durable to hold up during travel. Adequate internal packaging is always required to protect what's inside and without this, your goods will not be covered in the event of damage.
Key tips when using cartons:
- Don't overload. Make sure the carton is strong enough to carry the weight of the goods inside
- Choose the right size carton based on the weight of your goods and use high density cartons for heavier goods.
- Up to 5kg = 111B 212C
- 5kg-10kg = 212B or 212C 313B
- 10kg-15kg = 313B 313C
- 15kg-20kg = 313C or 623B 2112CB (double wall)
- As you're charged for the greater of actual or volumetric weight, don’t leave any dead space inside the carton
- Void fill. Pack dead space is filled with a void-fill material such as bubble wrap, newspaper, or air pillows to avoid items moving around during transit as this can cause damage in itself
- Seal shut securely. Use durable and water-resistant tape in case the box comes into contact with wet weather. Tape should be at least 38mm wide
- Label each box individually.. Don't tape boxes together as each individual box requires its own label and incorrectly declared goods will result in another invoice later once goods are re-weighed
Bulky & palletised goods
You'll be required to palletise heavy and bulky goods as these can't be manually handled. Pallets require a forklift when handling goods and a special tail-lift vehicle to transport the goods.
Goods over 30kg that are being delivered to a customer (ie B2C) should be placed on a skid or pallet for delivery otherwise you will incur fees from the carrier if they need to palletise the goods for delivery.
When you consolidate goods onto one pallet for collection to be broken down at the depot, you will also incur a palletisation fee if any of those goods require palletisation for delivery.
Please refer to our Shipping-Bulky-Freight-Pallets guide for more information.
Need supplies? We've got you covered!
Shipping supplies can be purchased directly from our supply store.