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How to Prevent Shipping Damage

Shipping damage is a headache for both sender and receiver. Whether you send goods frequently as an element of your business, order items to be shipped frequently, or wish to send something to a loved one, items arriving damaged can create a huge hassle. Without the proper preventative measures, the odds of a damaged package become much higher. Luckily, with the correct materials and strategic shipping practices, the odds of your items arriving damaged can lower drastically. 

prevent shipping damage

In this article, Paper Mart will explore how packages can become harmed during the transit process, and how Paper Mart’s selection of shipping supplies can help you prevent shipping damage. 

How Do Packages Become Damaged During Shipping?

When a package is shipped from point A to point B, countless factors might cause shipping damage to occur along the way. From inclement weather conditions to improper carrier handling, it’s important to anticipate these anomalies when preparing any item for shipment. Some of the most common causes of shipping damage include: 

  • Transit Movement: To prevent shipping damage, packages need to withstand freight transport and the last mile of the delivery, the point in which the shipment receives the most handling. Theft is also an unfortunate shipping factor, whether from shipping personnel or neighbors. 
  • Fluctuating Temperatures: Extremely hot or humid environments can frequently warp or damage packaging materials. Especially for edible shipments, it’s crucial to consider the recipient’s environment when packaging items. 
  • Improper Packaging: Even with the sturdiest box, if an item has too much space to move around, it becomes at risk of getting damaged. It’s suggested to package items properly to avoid preventable harm to your goods. 

Tips to Prevent Shipping Damage

Preventing shipping damage is all about guaranteeing that your package is prepared for whatever may occur during the transit process. While a damaged package isn’t something anyone is happy to discover, it’s a fairly common occurrence. Especially with the increase in online commerce, the likelihood that you’ve experienced shipping damage for something you’ve shipped is high. The key to a successful shipment is preparation. Here are a few tips for those who need to learn how to prevent shipping damage.  

Select a Trusted Shipping Carrier

It’s always suggested to choose a shipping carrier that you can trust will take good care of the shipment. The process might mean researching local shipping companies, such as your closest U.S. Postal Service (USPS), UPS®, FedEx®, or DHL®. Some companies will even offer shipping insurance, which allows the carrier to assume a portion of liability in the case of a shipment becoming damaged. Shipping insurance is suggested if you ship items regularly, as the need to prevent shipping damage becomes higher. 

Choose an Appropriately Sized Shipping Container & Fill Loose Space

The first step when shipping anything is choosing the shipping container. Avoid items getting damaged by sliding around during transit by choosing an appropriately-sized shipping box for the item. Smaller packages also tend to produce lower shipping costs. Choose a shipping box that is as close to the item’s size as possible, and don’t forget to add shipping fillers, such as bubble wrap and loose-fill, to eliminate any open space inside the container. 

Consider Weather Resistance

As we briefly covered, weather conditions can play a substantial role in causing issues within the transit process. Hot and humid environments can warp packaging materials, and rainfall can harm items by destroying cardboard shipping supplies. If you’re sending items to a destination facing dramatic weather fluctuations, consider that during the packaging process. In these cases, expedited shipping is suggested to decrease transit time. Also, reinforcing your package with thermal or weather-resistant packaging is recommended. 

Choose Sturdy Materials When Packaging to Prevent Damage

While a shipping box might be a perfect size, it’s equally important to consider the item’s weight and fragility when packaging goods. Corrugated cardboard boxes feature a variety of cardboard thickness options that can prevent your item from rupturing the walls of the box when handled. While not every item might require highly durable shipping boxes, anything that is particularly heavy could use the extra strength to prevent shipping damage. 

Apply Additional Packaging Measures to Fragile Items

Fragile items, such as glassware, valuable jewelry, or musical instruments should be separated from non-fragile items when placed inside the shipping box. Fragile items should be wrapped individually with bubble wrap or foam-cushioned packaging to prevent shipping damage. This both protects the items from other goods and stops them from moving around too much inside the container. 

Add Proper Labeling Before Shipment

Shipping carriers see hundreds if not thousands of packages every day, and they’re not going to understand that an item can be damaged without proper labeling. Add shipping labels, such as “Handle with Care” and “Fragile” labels to your shipping container to help indicate the package’s contents. This simple last step could be a determining factor in making sure items arrive safely as intended. 

Prevent Shipping Damage with Paper Mart’s Selection of Shipping Supplies! 

If you need to prevent shipping damage for your shipped items, Paper Mart has everything you need. Whether you’re moving across the country or sending one item to a loved one, our extensive selection of shipping and packaging materials ensure you’re prepared for any shipment, big or small. Explore Paper Mart’s shipping and packaging supplies today to learn more! 


  1. Francine Renée Schneider August 6, 2022

    I am an artist and need to ship my paintings and I am wondering what you would suggest. Many of the paintings are 30″ x 40″ x 1.5″ on stretched canvas. Looking forward to hearing your suggestions~
    Francine Renée

    • Gabrielle at Paper Mart August 9, 2022

      Hi Francine Renée!
      Thanks so much for reaching out. Your work is exquisite. I really enjoy the colors captured in your landscapes and the movement in your cityscapes.

      In terms of cushioning that could help keep your canvas pieces intact, I’ve passed your information along to our customer care team for personalized help. They’ll be reaching out soon!

  2. Radhaka Gualbance July 10, 2022

    I am into the chocolate business and am interested in your boxes for 12 bonbons. I want paper inserts for the boxes. Do you offer inserts made from paper?

    • Gabrielle at Paper Mart July 11, 2022

      Hi Radhaka!
      Thanks for reaching out! We have a variety of candy packaging essentials like paper inserts for boxes. Check out our full Candy Packaging collection here:

      For more personalized help, please give us a call at 800.745.8800, ext 2. Our Customer Care team is available Monday through Friday from 6:00AM – 5:00PM PST.

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