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What is Dunnage in eCommerce?

What is Dunnage in eCommerce?

Posted By
Olexiy Shapowal
June 6, 2023
Title asset to the "Summer Shipping" blog post from Atomix Logistics. A small green 3D truck with a small sun floating above it portrays the hot summer sun during order transport. KW: Ecommerce, 3PL, order fulfillment, fulfillment center, summer order fulfillment, new orders, new customer, temperature, protection, packaging, eco-friendly, sustainability

In the fast-paced world of ecommerce, protecting your products during the shipping process is essential to make sure customers are happy with their purchase(s). Especially when building rapport with new customers, damaged products can reflect poorly on your brand image. 

Luckily, that’s where dunnage comes in! Dunnage, a term commonly used in the logistics industry, refers to any material used to protect products during shipping and handling. As ecommerce continues to grow each year, proper packaging and the use of dunnage have become crucial to ensure product safety and customer satisfaction. In this blog post, we will explore the importance of dunnage in ecommerce logistics, and how it can help businesses improve their supply chain efficiency while maintaining customer satisfaction.

Types of Dunnage

When it comes to ecommerce logistics, choosing the right type of dunnage is essential to ensure that products arrive at their destination in pristine condition. There are various types of dunnage available, each with its own unique properties and uses.

Air pillows and Bubble wrap: As far as protection during transit, these are the two most popular types of lightweight and cost-effective dunnage. Compared to other types of dunnage, they offer superior protection from impact, and are commonly used to protect fragile items such as glassware and electronics. Additionally, these are some of the cheapest to produce, as they are simply filled with air.

Packing peanuts and Foam inserts: On the other hand, packing peanuts are ideal for filling voids in packages and preventing items from shifting during transportation. They provide cushioning and support while also reducing the risk of damage due to impact or contact. While they are not as effective against impact as air-filled dunnage, foam is significantly better for filling large boxes that have a lot of unused space on the inside. 

Corrugated paper and Cardboard inserts: When a package contains multiple items, often each item needs to be at least somewhat separated from the other products. Additionally, some packages require extra structural support to make sure boxes don’t crush each other during transit. Cardboard inserts offer improved stability for products inside of the package, and corrugated paper helps prevent items from coming into contact with each other, reducing the risk of damage or blemishes on arrival.

By choosing the right kind of dunnage for their products, businesses can ensure that their customers receive their orders in good condition. This not only improves customer satisfaction, but also helps minimize product returns and associated costs.

The Role of Dunnage in Customer Experience

As we mentioned above; besides taking good care of your products - dunnage plays a crucial role in ensuring customer satisfaction and promoting sustainability. Many forms of dunnage are reusable or recyclable, meaning fulfillment partners can spend less on packing materials and create a smaller environmental impact throughout their operations. 

The use of good quality dunnage protects product integrity and ensures that customers receive their orders in perfect condition. This not only improves customer satisfaction, but also helps reduce returns and increase brand visibility through word of mouth. With the rise of ecommerce and the increasing importance of online reviews and ratings, it has become more important than ever for businesses to prioritize customer satisfaction, and dunnage plays a key role in achieving this goal.

By choosing eco-friendly dunnage options, businesses can also reduce their environmental impact and strengthen their brand image. Customers have become more conscious of the environmental impact of the products they purchase, and by using eco-friendly packaging materials, businesses can appeal to these customers while also reducing their carbon footprint. This can help improve brand reputation and attract environmentally conscious consumers.

Considering the protection of products and the environmental impact of packaging choices will help businesses optimize their logistics operations while promoting sustainability and earth-friendly business practices. But most importantly - your customers will feel a lot better about their purchase knowing they are buying from a brand that takes the extra steps to help our environment heal. 

Determining Ideal Dunnage for Brands

Customized dunnage solutions are a game-changer for businesses looking to protect their high-end products or specialized equipment during shipping. By designing a tailored solution that fits the unique shape and size of the item being shipped, ecommerce business owners can ensure maximum protection while also conveying their brand image through engaging packaging.

In addition to protecting the product(s), customized dunnage solutions can also reduce the amount of unsatisfied customers. By providing a packaging solution that is specifically designed for the item(s) being shipped, brands can minimize the risk of damage during shipping and ensure that the customer receives the product in the best condition.

Defining the most ideal dunnage solution requires careful planning and collaboration between the packaging supplier and business owner. Factors such as the size and weight of the product, shipping method, and cost are all considered to create an effective and cost-efficient solution that meets the needs of both the business and the end customers.


In ecommerce logistics, Dunnage isn't just about functionality – it's also about style. Why settle for boring packing peanuts when you can use colorful air pillows or foam inserts that feel like a brand’s personal touch? By choosing eco-friendly and visually appealing dunnage options, you can make a statement about your brand that resonates with environmentally conscious consumers.

Don’t forget about the benefits of dunnage for your bottom line, either! Through reducing product returns and associated costs, dunnage helps businesses improve their supply chain efficiency and maintain a competitive edge in the marketplace.

As ecommerce continues to grow each year, the importance of dunnage in logistics will only continue to increase. So why not have some fun with it? With the right dunnage solutions, you can protect your products, improve customer satisfaction, and show off your brand's personality all at the same time.

If you are interested in learning more about using high-quality dunnage for your brand, reach out to Atomix today to access our myriad of sustainable packaging partners!

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