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Ecommerce mailers: is recycled plastic a good choice?

Choosing good ecommerce packaging is crucial for any company that ships goods. And for good reason, as it is the first thing your customers see when they receive your products. But, since consumers have become more environmentally aware, opting for good shipping packaging can be a challenge. For its natural look, cardboard often seems like the best choice of material. But is it really the case?

Packaging for e-commerce

Recycled plastic packaging can help you reduce your carbon footprint

The way our society manages plastic has become a real problem. And as companies, we must work to influence how much plastic stays in the recycling loop.

After use, packaging materials are mostly seen as a waste, and not enough is reused

Most people would not believe how much plastic is produced each year. And it is understandable, as the number is actually quite shocking: globally, 380 million tons of plastic are generated every year

It is also worth noting that in 2019, the amount of packaging waste that was generated in the EU was estimated at 178.1 kg per inhabitant. On this figure, plastic, which represented 19.4% of all of it, was the second most used packaging material, just after paper and cardboard. 

Recycling allows us to give a second life to most packaging materials, but unfortunately, not enough is done yet. 

Indeed, as the graph below shows, in the same year, when around 35 kg of plastic packaging waste was generated in the EU per capita, only close to 15 was recycled. This means that more than 40% still ended up in landfills or polluting our landscapes and oceans!

Plastic packaging waste in the EU


Choosing recycled plastic packaging is a step towards reducing plastic waste

As businesses, we need to make more sustainable choices, and this can start with the way we ship our goods! 

By using recycled plastic instead of other packaging materials, we are not only able to help save natural resources, but also to reduce the amount of waste that ends up in nature, and prevent pollution. We can in fact reduce by 66% the amount of energy that is used compared to virgin plastic!

As a brand, you can also trigger a change in your customers’ habits by making them aware that plastic can be reused and should be recycled, while letting the plastic industry know that single-use plastic is not an option anymore. This is how you can help achieve a circular economy and close the recycling loop!

Ecological plastic mailers

Recycled plastic mailers have many advantages compared to corrugated boxes

We often mistakenly think that we should prefer cardboard boxes to bubble mailers and plastic shipping bags because they are made from natural materials. But in reality, cardboard and paper shipping packaging are not always the most ecological option for your business.

Cardboard boxes consume more energy to be produced

According to a study, 52% of all Europeans think that cardboard is the most eco-friendly shipping packaging. But in reality, this is mostly related to its natural-looking aesthetics. For example, a study from the Northern Ireland Assembly concluded that plastic bags consume four times less water than paper bags during production. 

Recycled plastic mailers are more resistant and safe

On average, an e-commerce package is handled 20 times or more during logistics, giving it just as many chances to get damaged. To counter that, unlike cardboard boxes which can easily be cut through and made wet, recycled plastic mailers are highly resistant and waterproof to keep your goods safe. This means less damage, and less broken items.

Shipping bags can be used for a wide range of items

Some items are easy to pack and ship, but some are not. And for the latter, plastic mailers are the best option as they are highly flexible. This flexibility also allows for easier storage in warehouses before goods like clothing items, cosmetics, electronics or accessories, are shipped.

Plastic mailers offer great branding options

Even though packaging’s first role is to protect your items during handling, logistics and transport, aesthetics also matter, which is why the customizability of plastic mailers is a great advantage: it allows you to tailor them to your business and spread your brand’s image and values.

At FILMAR, we propose many customization options to allow you to create the perfect solution for your company, with for example custom overprints and colors, barcode printing, additional handles and gussets, and much more! And if your company requires packaging that can be customized from A to Z, our Co-Ex Filbags are meant for you!

Sustainable e-commerce mailers

Using ecological shipping packaging made of recycled plastic will help you save money

Every company is looking for the best option that will be as efficient as cost-effective, and recycled plastic mailers combine the two.

Bubble mailers and shipping bags take less storage space

Taking into account several of the advantages that plastic packaging holds over cardboard boxes, we can also see that it is a solution that allows businesses to save money when compared to other methods.

These budget savings actually occur even before the product is shipped and begin in the warehouse. As they do not take up much space, do not need to be folded or flattened, and can be stored only using little space, plastic mailers allow you to make savings as early as during their storage!

Recycled plastic shipping bags help you save on transport and fuel

In comparison to corrugated boxes, mailers are also much more lightweight. In practice, it takes about 7 trucks to transport 2 million paper bags, compared to 1 truck for the same amount of plastic bags.

This is because of the material itself, but also because less additional packaging is needed to protect the item they contain from bad weather conditions such as rain, mechanical damage, and bad handling.

Reusable shipping packaging is best for returns

One of the most important savings you can make is when it comes to returns. In an e-commerce setting, 20% of consumers return items because they received damaged products, which leads to tremendous losses. Indeed, when a return does happen, the cost to replace a damaged product can be several times as high as the original cost of shipping. 

And to avoid this, you need to choose the right shipping solution. Recycled plastic shipping bags are sturdy, allowing them to keep your goods from being broken, and hence, from being returned. And on top of that, they can be customized to incorporate a resealable strap for easy return to lower the cost of sending back the broken item!

E-commerce packaging bags

Consumers are in demand of ecological packaging solutions

As more and more customers are concerned about their impact on their environment, it is important to show them you care as much as they do.

Environmental responsibility has become a top priority for consumers

According to a 2022 report, 70% of consumers identify as environmentally aware (a number that keeps growing each year), and 66% consider it important to purchase products packaged in environmentally friendly materials.

Another key figure of this study states that 57% of consumers are less likely to buy products in packaging they consider harmful to the environment! 

It goes even further than that, as they also increasingly expect companies to be socially responsible and to use ethical practices.


Choosing recycled plastic over other packaging materials boosts your brand image

As another direct consequence of customers’ sustainable preferences, having eco-friendly packaging can do wonders for the image of your brand.

Acting for sustainability with ecological packaging solutions can create an emotional bond with your customers

Shipping packaging is much more than just a means of getting your goods safely delivered to your customers. It can be a real communication tool to convey what your company is really about.

In a sea of businesses, it is important to make your brand stand out, which can be done by embracing a value that is at the heart of your company.

By doing so, you will be able to build a strong reputation, as customers will choose your company specifically and will be more inclined to develop an emotional bond with it. And this emotional bond is in fact crucial: according to a recent survey from Deloitte Digital, 44% of people would make a recommendation based on emotional criteria.

If your company values environmental protection and sustainability, choosing an eco friendly shipping packaging will help you convey your engagement to customers. 

Eco-Friendly Bubble mailers

A sustainable image can conquer the hearts of Millennials

If you want to seize new growth opportunities, you have to win the attention of the younger customers. However, for that, you will need to develop concrete efforts to protect the environment. 

While being  the number 1 e-shoppers, Millennials (understand people that were born between the year 1981 and 1996) also place the protection of the environment as their top concern.

In terms of behavior, this translates in the fact that two-thirds of them try to cut down on single-use plastics and to recycle more, and 47% make a point to educate themselves on the environmental aspects of a brand they consume.

This means that with the right efforts, like adopting packaging that is made from recycled plastic, and with the right image approach, you can seduce a whole new group of people!


All in all, for small businesses just like for large businesses, going for more green and environmentally friendly shipping options is the way to go for growth! Not only will you save money and resources, but you will also win the heart of consumers.

If you are now ready to go the eco-friendly road with recycled plastic packaging, we at FILMAR group have exactly what you need! On top of being made with recycled plastics and paper, our packaging solutions are also recyclable and reusable.

Discover our ecological shipping and courier packaging now: