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16 Aug 2019

Things to Consider when Designing Drink Packaging

How can you utilize good design to increase the prestige and to boost the demand for your beverage products?

Here are some useful tips to help you design an effective drink packaging!

1. Analyze your competition

What are the similarities between designing the shape of drink packaging and label design? Often times the similarities stem from the cosnumers’ expectation that a certain product should look a certain way.

Other than design, a brand has to consider other functional aspects (cost of production, materisl requirements, target market), which will be similar for other competitord in the industry. 

How do you differentiate yourself from the competition while still adhering to a set of fixed parameter?

Sometimes, the smalles difference make the biggest impact. For example, let’s take a look at the Formula Water sports drink that we designed. 

The bottles themselves look similar to other sports drinks bottles, they have a tapered end for easy grip, they are transparent so that potential consumers can see the brightly colored drinks inside – but the placement of the label is positioned higher than other competitors.

On the surface, all these things might look like minor variations, but when placed side by side with similar products, the Formula Water bottle look strikingly different.

2. Make your packaging design unique

A consumer needs to be able to get a sense of what a beverage tastes like just by looking at the bottle.

Even though you don’t need to incorporate every single taste profile into your design to effectively convey the taste of the product, you need to be able to illustrate the feelings that the beverage will give to your consumers. 

For example, for a refreshing drink, the bottle needs to be transparent and smooth, so that the consumers can feel the refreshing feeling of drinking something cool and sparkling clear. 

For a smooth and soothing taste, choose a frosted bottle that will remind the consumers of a bottle of milk or a tub of ice cream.

3. Choose the right size


Do you know? When looking at a group picture, your eyes will be automatically drawn to the tallest kid in the crowd. Without skewing the proportion of your packaging, you can utilize that trick to draw the consumers’ attention to your product. 

The height of your bottle can increase the profile of your beverage product. Without making your bottle too tall for the standard supermarket shelf, consider making your bottle a bit taller than your competitors. 

Most times, the bottle with a tall, slender design will be more easily identifiable by the consumers. 

4. Designing the Label

Although the shape and size of the beverage packaging is the main focus of the designer (we believe a uniquely and glamorously designed bottle is the quickest way to win the competition), a label can make your bottle stand out even more.

The color choice or even lack of it, will make your label and brand look outstanding.

Use pastel colors or just black and white. The choice is in your hand, just make sure the relevant information is displayed clearly, and you will have designed an effective and elegant label. 

Other than the above facts, I will share with you a thought frame of questions that you need to follow to effectively instruct your designer to design your beverage packaging. 

Use this as a guide to help you design the most effective packaging for your product, rather than merely designing a logo or illustration. 

The following questions will cover 4 major aspects:

  • Function

  • Brand & Product

  • Industry

  • Technical Information


  • What is the purpose of your project?

  • What are the main challenges of this project?

  • What do you envision for your packaging?

Brand & Product

  • What is your brand?

  • What is your product category?

  • What are your product’s unique selling points?

  • What is your product’s target market?

  • What are the functional benefits of your product?

  • What are the emotional benefits of your product?

  • What is your brand’s identity?

  • What are your marketing and communication strategy?


  • Product category description

  • How is the industry?

  • What is your target maket?

  • Who are your competitors?

  • What is your company’s vision?

  • What marketing channel do you plan to use?

Technical Information

  • Number of SKU to be launched.

  • What type of packaging will you use?

  • Technical requirements.

  • Production requirements.

This framework will help identify the strength of your product and brand that you will want to highlight with your packaging design.

When you have the answers to all the above questions, you will be able to effectively work with your designer in order to produce an amazing packaging design for your product.