Amazon's frustration free packaging


Amazon has started offering frustration free packaging. As they explain:
The Certified Frustration-Free Package (on the left) is recyclable and comes without excess packaging materials such as hard plastic clamshell casings, plastic bindings, and wire ties. It's designed to be opened without the use of a box cutter or knife and will protect your product just as well as traditional packaging (on the right). Products with Frustration-Free Packaging can frequently be shipped in their own boxes, without an additional shipping box.
This is quite a clever move. In the old days, when people would buy products from retail stores, the packaging was one of the main product elements a person would use to determine if they wanted to buy something. Packaging costs a lot of money. To give a (slightly extreme) example, a bottle of Coca-cola is over 95% water. Most of the cost is the plastic containing the liquid.

However, when a shopper buys from Amazon, they are often not buying based on the packaging. They often don't even see the packaging - instead presented with images of the actual product. Particularly on Amazon, other shopper's comments play a big role. They only see the packaging for the 10 seconds between when they receive the product in the mail, and when it is trashed in the bin.

How is this for an idea: sell the same goods you currently sell on Amazon, but use much cheaper packaging instead -- and charge the same price as the version with the expensive packaging. To the consumer, position this cheaper packaging as having a great benefit to them -- it is 'frustration free'; you don't need to get tangled up trying to cut up weird shaped plastic.

Innovation comes in many forms. This one looks like it might have just made Amazon, and the wholesaler, a little extra money.