Packaging Design in China

China has its specifics in every aspect of marketing, packaging is no exception.

Therefore, every company should develop the strategy to meet the needs of Chinese consumers. It also relates to the design of a great packaging in China. Foreign companies which do not make proper packaging design research prior entering the Chinese market are in for a lot of difficulties.

What makes the Chinese market different

To better understand what the packaging design in China should be like, it is helpful to visit a couple of Chinese supermarkets in different regions of the country. The Chinese market is fragmented, uneven and highly competitive. Regions and cities along the east coast, as well as the south of China, are more developed as the population has a much higher income than residents of central and west China. Moreover, there are many differences in dialects, cuisine, climate and shopping habits. The PRC is the fourth largest country in the world, which consists of 34 provincial entities and more than 600 cities. In China, the size of the country is a great asset and a roadblock to the development at the same time. Even today, with a well developed logistic and distribution network, coordinating a product launch all over China in a timely manner is still a very difficult task.

Features of the packaging design in China

The most important feature of the designing of packaging in China is that Chinese consumers prefer bright colors. According to psychologists, colors increase brand awareness by 80% and affect 65-85% of purchases. Colors in packaging designs in China can help buyers determine a product’s category. For example, it can be a good indicator for food (eg green = vegan). Red is always a symbol of wealth, yellow is the color of the emperor. While manufacturers need to keep this in mind, these colors should be used carefully. In addition, it is worth considering the features of advertising promotion. In China, many of the world’s social networks and browsers do not work. This means that ads will have to be customized for the Chinese Internet. Therefore, Doxaganda team would also advise a brand looking to enter the Chinese market to get an account on a Chinese social media platforms to promote your brand. For example, it is common for wine branding in China.

Source: Daxue Consulting, supermarket shelves in Shanghai

Packaging design to help you target the right consumers

The most active consumers in China today are millennials. Many of them graduated from foreign universities, but returned and opened their own business “at home”. Business is different from the stereotypes of the previous generation. In addition to knowledge, they brought with them new consumption habits. They want to feel and demonstrate their superiority: they use western tools, buy foreign products. At the same time, they do not want to overpay for premium brands. It is the feeling of “premium” that is important to them, not actually owning the most premium brands. It has become very important for the modern Chinese consumers not to doubt the correctness of their preferences.

Also, the Chinese consumers value ​​their time. They avoid wasting their time reading labels: if the packaging has too much information, customers can see this as disrespect, especially if they are too busy. Therefore, the labels on the packaging should be short, concise and clear.

What to be careful with when doing packaging design in China

It is important to pay attention to working with the form of designing of packaging in China.  Many materials for packaging are “tactile” in China: there is varnish, foil stamping, a variety of paper, hot stamping.

Packaging design in China is emotional, with a strong composition and “Asian” flavor. The packaging often features illustrations of characters in their own Asian graphics. In addition, a literary approach to illustration is noticeable: the packaging contains many “sewn-in” stories from Chinese popular culture. Many companies use famous personalities: pop stars, KOLs, musicians and artists (their photos or sketches) for packaging design in China.

Storytelling is another important feature of packaging design in China. It allows brands to build an emotional and lively connection with the consumer. The story captivates the listener, infects him with emotions to which he/she can relate to.

How to integrate technologies in packaging design in China

Designing of packaging in China should contain different information – logos, names, copyrights, large and small illustrations. The font must necessarily convey the mood. Doxaganda can help brands collaborate with the Chinese AR to create scanning app for packaging design in China. It is not only about QR code, consumers just need to take a picture of the package, and the system will redirect them to the product game or video.

Lay’s example

Lay’s designers have added a modern twist to the packaging design of Lay’s Chinese chips. They chose lotus flower as the leitmotif against the background of bright colors of the packaging, according to which the taste options differ. To make the packaging images more appetizing, the photographs depict Chinese dishes made with these ingredients in a national setting.

Source: Gunaxin, Lay’s in China

Main types of packaging design in China

• Individually designed product packaging

Doxaganda’s design department helps you to customize packaging for your brand.

This requires you to design your packaging ahead of time. Doxaganda team will help you choose the right material, thickness, dimensions, colors, etc.

• Using the product packaging method developed at the factory.

The plant can offer ready-made packaging options.

Typically, suppliers in China offer five to twenty different standard packaging models for the customer to choose from. However, it is trickier to customize sizes and materials or designs for each product.

How Doxaganda will help you with designing of packaging in China

Doxaganda can help you design your packaging for the Chinese market. Our team will provide you with information about Chinese consumers and guide you through every step of the packaging design process in China.

Doxaganda will do social listening in Chinese social networks such as Xiaohongshu, Weibo, Wechat, as well as shopping platforms in China such as Taobao, Tmall,, etc. This will provide an opportunity to understand the preferences of Chinese consumers in packaging design. Focus groups will also help determine which aspects of packaging are important to Chinese consumers. In addition, our creative team will provide you with packaging ideas.