Packaging Innovation
November 7, 2014

Why rounded beverage packaging graphics work better

According to a report from the Institute of Psychological Sciences in the UK consumers prefer circular shaped beverage packaging graphics on labels. In terms of purchase likelihood, all participants indicated a preference for rounded graphics, as well as upwards orientated graphics. It remains unclear, however, as to why we prefer these shapes.

Rounded vs angular graphics

The study was conducted by the Institute of Psychological Sciences, part of the University of Leeds in the UK, recruiting participants from the University all aged 22. They were presented with two different products, each with its own label design. Researchers examined both shape – rounded versus angular – an orientation – upward versus downward – of the label to see how this might translate to product design. All participants indicated a preference for rounded graphics, as well as upwards orientated graphics. As far as purchase likelihood was concerned, labels with rounded graphics were said to score higher.

What are the implications for beverage packaging companies?

Does that mean all beverage brands should radically alter their label design, in favor of rounded shapes? Well, they might, although researchers think it’s too early to say anything about possible brand decisions. A better idea would be to “take this research as indicating some features of design [and then] gather their own product specific data on which to base design decisions”, researchers of the University of Leeds state. “It would be interesting to conduct research that examines these issues cross-culturally. A related question concerns the extent to which shape preferences may (or may not) be consistent over time – will people’s preference be the same in 10 or 20 years?”

What do you make of these revelations concerning graphics for beverage packaging? Do you think it would make a huge difference on the shelf? Let us know in the comments!