Why Are Customers Buying Less Wrapping Paper and More Gift Bags?


stand of gift bags for sale

People today seem to be buying in recent years fewer rolls of festive wrapping paper and more gift bags instead. Wrapping paper was once considered a holiday necessity. No Christmas gift was complete without glossy paper covered in snowflakes or candy canes. But customer preferences are changing. Here are some reasons why:

Wrapping takes some skill

Let's face it - wrapping gifts with paper is time-consuming. Carefully folding edges, taping down seams and ensuring graphics align takes patience. This skill is less known. People do perceive badly bagged presents as more carelessly given. Gift bags do not have this problem.

Retailers make more from bags.

Retailers would prefer to sell more bags as it's a better sale and it's less trouble. Besides, wrapping is an art and takes time. A bag is a straight and easy sale. 

Faster Paced Lifestyles

Today's customers lead increasingly busy lives and prefer the convenience of gift bags. Just tuck the present inside and go—no tedious wrapping required.

Less Excitement Over Designs

Retailers in the past invested heavily in new holiday wrapping paper designs each year, but looking at these patterns, they seem to be less appealing. The standard prints like snowflakes, trees and ornaments feel boring and expected. Gift bags today have more customisation and self-expression.


The Gift Bag Boom

To remain relevant, retailers need to respond to changing consumer behaviour. 

Wider Selections

Gift bags now come in endless colours, patterns, and materials. Stock a wide assortment of bag sizes and styles. Keep selections fresh each year by introducing new variations and customization options.

Prominent Merchandising

Make gift bags a focal point of holiday displays and signage. Spotlight them as the modern way to wrap presents. Place them prominently at checkout areas to spur impulse purchases.

Bundled Packages

Create ready-made gift bag packages with tissue paper, ribbon, gift tags and other coordinating accessories. These bundles make putting together polished gifts fast and easy.

Eco-Friendly and Reusable

Now, many want to be green, and there is growing awareness about the environmental impact of single-use wrapping paper. Unlike gift wrap, you can have reusable gift bags are considered a “greener” choice by eco-conscious consumers.

Making Gift Bags Profitable

For retailers, one problem is that bags take up more shelf space, and so need to be replenished more often. Here are some tips to maximise profits:

  • Stock smaller assortments of higher quality bags that command bigger price points. Check margins.

  • Suggest add-on items like coordinating ribbons, candles or decorations with purchase.

  • Consider bundling free or discounted bags for sales over a certain amount. This incentivises bag purchases.

Adapting to Gift Bag Demand

Wrapping paper was once a hallmark of holiday shopping at physical retailers. However, with customers choosing reusable gift bags for convenience and environmental reasons, its prominence is fading.

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