Box Certificates and Their Importance

Customers take it for granted that their items will arrive properly packaged and, most importantly, in the right box. However, choosing the correct box for every shipment relies on understanding the Box Certificate found on the base of most cardboard boxes.
The certificate contains a wealth of information about the specifications of the box, relating to its size, construction, and weight limits. A Box Certificate will tell you if your chosen carton is adequate for shipping a specific order and can provide enough protection for the contents. So, what can you expect to learn from this certificate?

Box Construction

The Box Certificate tells you how the box is constructed, for example, if it has a single, double or triple wall of corrugated board.
If you choose a single wall carton, it has a fluted medium inserted between two layers of liner board. In comparison, a carton with a double wall box has two fluted mediums between three liner boards. A triple walled carton has three fluted mediums held between four layers of liner board.

Box Weight

The basis weight of the box is given as pounds per thousand square feet and relates directly to the strength of the box. A box with a higher basis weight has greater tensile strength.

Box Strength

The box strength weighting relates to burst strength, which is the tensile and tearing strength and is given as pounds per square inch. The burst strength refers to how well the material can contain its contents when under stress. Strength weighting also measures the edge crush strength, which is the compressive strength is measured from top to bottom.
Boxes that need a greater burst strength require a greater basis weight. Boxes that need a better edge crush value will achieve this through the vertically oriented flutes of the corrugated cardboard, allowing manufacturers to lower the basis weight. As a rule of thumb, heavier or denser items need packaging with a greater burst strength, whereas items that need more protection against becoming crushed need a greater edge crush value.

Carton Size

The size of the carton indicates the maximum outside dimensions of the completed box when you add together its length, width, and depth. Generally, as the box size increases, its contribution to overall strength decreases.

Gross Weight

The gross weight listed on a carton indicates the maximum weight the carton can contain, but this doesn’t necessarily mean contents loaded up to the gross weight will arrive in perfect condition. This depends on several factors that include the product characteristics and the way it is transported.
Usually, the weight limits are more applicable for items that are palletized and which are transported in freight shipments as opposed to those shipped via smaller carriers.

Selecting the Optimal Carton

When it comes to excellent cartonization, you can rely on MagicLogic’s BlackBox. The main features of this clever, easy-to-integrate software include cartonization and mixed palletization. The best boxes are selected from your stock order after order, providing near real-time responses that are ideal for use during checkout in e-Fulfilment. It supports complex mixed pallet stacking, including robotics, ensuring delicate items are never crushed.

Contact us to discover how BlackBox will streamline your cartonization and palletization processes.

Parcel Shippers Facing a Challenging Market

Over the past few years, the parcel shipping industry has changed unimaginably. The arrival of COVID, lockdowns, and stimulus cash led to an online shopping boom in every possible sector. E-commerce levels increased substantially, placing the supply chains under considerable strain. Nowadays, even though people can shop at brick-and-mortar stores and shopping malls, their shopping habits have changed, possibly for good, as they have discovered the ease of shopping online and having items delivered to their door. While parcel carriers are enjoying increased earnings and growth, the picture isn’t entirely rosy.

Current Problems Facing Shippers

Challenges include rising inflation and interest rates, increased living costs, and record-breaking gas prices. The supply chains still aren’t back to normal, with long waits for numerous everyday items remaining very common. Problems are exacerbated by increased COVID cases in China, resulting in a lockdown of many ports and a subsequent delay in shipping. There is also the worry that as fall approaches, an increase of COVID cases in North America could disrupt the supply chain further, particularly if it starts impacting warehouse workers and others who help ensure parcels are packed and dispatched efficiently.

Forcing a More Innovative Approach to Shipping Parcels

Despite these problems, shippers are finding innovative ways to help keep supply chains moving and hopefully continue to enjoy the growth they have seen in this industry. However, everyone seems to agree that shipping rates will increase and that the fuel surcharges are here to stay for the foreseeable future. As a result, shippers are doing everything they can to avoid awkwardly shaped or ugly shipments that are trickier and more expensive to package and transport. One problem is that a large and ugly shipment can mean there is little or no room left for smaller parcels. As a result, parcel carriers are trying to ensure that bigger and bulkier shipments can generate the same revenue as the smaller parcels that are much easier to pack and ship efficiently.

Another way shippers are addressing these concerns is by trying to forecast their need for containers, railcars, and ULDs more accurately, maximizing every cubic foot of space. They are increasingly turning to technology to ensure loads are packed correctly and accurately and are directing resources to areas where they can realize the highest returns.

Excessive packaging remains a concern, with shippers often cubing out a load well before they reach anything approaching maximum weight. This is due to products being packed inefficiently, wasting expensive space and packaging materials, and shipping capacity.
Staffing problems are still a major issue throughout the supply chain. Even when new staff are hired, retaining them isn’t easy. Churn can frequently mean companies must spend precious resources on hiring and training staff who then leave within a short while. The cost of hiring warehouse workers and other skilled staff has increased but persuading customers to accept higher prices isn’t easy.

Facing the Challenge

MagicLogic has over a quarter of a century of experience helping companies ship products more economically and safely. Over the years, we have helped thousands of companies worldwide achieve substantial savings on shipping costs. Our software minimizes expensive ‘dead’ space in cartons and trucks, shipping containers, railcars, and ULDs.

How We Can Help

Our innovative software solutions optimize loads efficiently, accurately, and safely, whether you are a small company shipping only a few containers each month or a large multinational shipping thousands of parcels worldwide every day of the year. Our solutions are easily scalable and can grow with your company as you expand your business. We have considerable experience in packing ‘ugly’ or oddly shaped loads more cost-effectively, for example, when shipping furniture or perishable goods. We also offer custom solutions for many industries that have specific packing requirements.

Planning Your Loads More Efficiently with Cube-IQ

Cube-IQ is an affordable load optimization program. It allows companies to plan loads efficiently, making it easier to predict the need for specific-sized containers weeks or months in advance so they can be ordered well ahead of time. Our intuitive loading rules meet even the strictest requirements, such as axle weights, while ensuring loads are packed securely and stably and arrive in perfect condition. Our load optimization software optimizes fill rates, and we were among the first to introduce a drag-and-drop graphical user interface that is easy and intuitive. Step through the loading plans, print them out, or send them to your warehouse team for accurate and faster packing.

The software helps reduce the need for costly fill materials and avoids shipping empty and very expensive space. It is also perfect for companies seeking to achieve greener credentials.

We have deliberately designed a user interface that immediately looks familiar, and with our expert training, we can get people up and running competently within an hour. We offer an excellent support contract to ensure your load planning continues to run smoothly, year after year. You won’t need to worry if your load planner retires or churn because we can ensure their replacement is soon up to speed.

High-Speed Cartonization and Palletization with BlackBox

Our Windows-based service integrates quickly and easily with any existing or new ERP/WMS. Our experienced integrators can ensure it is up and running in a few days. It is ideal for e-commerce, providing optimal carton selection in real-time so that shipping prices can be calculated at checkout.
Customers requiring palletization will find no better product on the market. We can actually do true mixed case palletization and do it well. BlackBox supports manual and robotic pack stations.

Put Us to the Test

If better load optimization software is on your shopping list, we invite you to put us to the test. We offer a free evaluation of our products, and our experienced project managers can help you set up test loads and demonstrate the product to you and your team.
Contact us for more information and take the first step toward better load optimization today.

Answers to 15 Common Load Optimization Problems

1. Our shipping costs are too high, and containers/pallets are never properly filled.

MagicLogic specializes in high-efficiency container and pallet loading. From railcars to trucks to pallets to ULDs and small parcels. Typical savings are in the 5-20% range and are easily calculated and tracked.

2. We get fined and turned around because our trucks are too heavy or improperly balanced.

Our software can calculate loads taking into account weight distribution front/back and left/right, and can also balance weight across axles, meeting all state regulations and avoiding those pesky fines that mount up so quickly.

3. Our products arrive damaged due to poor loading, resulting in high returns.

Poorly loaded products are the leading cause of damage during transit, as is a lack of support, bracing, and dunnage. As a result, approximately 1 in 10 eCommerce packages arrive damaged, significantly impacting the bottom line. Our customizable loading rules ensure products are loaded according to specified orientation, stacking, etc., ensuring even fragile items are protected and arrive in perfect condition.

4. We rely heavily on tribal knowledge for our loading – what happens when that person leaves or retires?

Our software removes the risk of tribal knowledge by installing an easy-to-use system that will provide consistent results no matter who uses it, and if someone leaves or you take on new staff, we can provide staff training. With the proper training, we can get them up to speed in just an hour or so.

5. We have a high staff turnover – it’s taking too long to train them how to load properly.

Churn / Inexperienced staff who don’t have a clue how to load or stack safely and effectively are trained quickly to use Cube-IQ. Our software is deliberately designed to be intuitive to use, with a loading screen that already looks and feels like an Excel document. With the help of our support team, we can get even the most inexperienced user loading like a pro within a couple of hours at most.

6. We have no idea if our guys are loading products correctly.

With our software, anyone can read the easy-to-follow loading plans. They show step by step how a container needs to be loaded, ensuring it is cubed out correctly and items arrive in perfect condition.

7. We need to automate – we receive thousands of orders daily and need something to tell our team how to pack fast.

Our loading programs can process orders in near real-time, telling packers which carton to use and how to pack items leaving minimum void space.

8. Our new or existing WMS or ERP system is giving poor results- we think we can do better

MagicLogic software integrates seamlessly with new and existing WMS and ERP systems. Often these systems only include a loading program as an add-on, realizing that many users will not utilize it. In comparison, we do nothing but loading software and have dedicated the last quarter of a century to developing our loading software and are still refining and improving it.

9. We have difficulty finding software to meet our unique constraints or requirements.

Our loading rules are fully customizable to meet even the most exacting requirements, ensuring every load is fully compliant and safe. For example, do you have fragile items that can only be packed on top? No problem! Simply specify that in the loading rules. The same goes for other awkward to load items that perhaps can only be loaded in one orientation. Our comprehensive loading rules cover most operational requirements, but if you need something customized we can also customize rules to suit.

10. Our company policy is to become greener – we need to reduce our carbon footprint.

We have all been in that situation where we have received items in oversized cartons, packaged with excessive dunnage to prevent them from moving around during transportation. Our software utilizes the dimensions and weight of items to select the right sized carton, order after order, minimizing fill material while still ensuring items arrive perfectly presented and packaged for the customer.

11. How can we select containers or cartons more efficiently?

Our loading software automatically selects the right containers or cartons for orders. So you don’t need to worry about selecting them or that they won’t be filled correctly. You can even have additional fill items packed to cube out a load when necessary, avoiding paying for empty space in an expensive container.

12. We need to quote shipping costs more quickly.

Once our software receives the order, it immediately calculates the best-sized carton for each order and the shipping costs. It is perfect for busy eCommerce sites.

13. We are struggling with HAZMAT / Liion shipping rules.

HAZMAT and Liion shipping rules are complicated, but Cube-IQ handles them with ease. Our customizable loading rules ensure all hazardous or combustible products are loaded safely, so once packed, then you can ship with confidence; there is no need to check or repack cartons.

14. Our guy spends hours each day planning shipments.

Planning intricate and large loads is time-consuming, even for experienced planners. With our software, all items, their dimensions, and their weight are already imported into the program. It is simply a matter of selecting items and the number required, and the load optimization software does the rest, saving hours of labor costs and packing loads more efficiently. You can even save popular load plans for reuse.

15. We need to order containers well in advance, but it is taking too long to plan loads.

Many of our customers plan loads months ahead, using our software, so they know exactly how many containers of each size to order. With the recent increase in shipping costs, these calculations are even more important than before and ensure customers receive products when expected.Do these problems sound familiar? Contact us to discover more about our load optimization solutions and an online demo.

Accelerating eCommerce Driving Demand for Greener Packaging

Environmentalists have been urging everyone to choose greener and more sustainable options for a long while, but the increased demand for eCommerce over the past few months has seen their voice grow in stature.
Since Covid-19, consumers have become increasingly sensitive toward packaging. Excess packaging is difficult and cumbersome to recycle, and manufacturers and consumers are increasingly asking for more renewable materials, reflecting the growing aversion toward single-use plastics globally.

Many companies have already risen to the challenge by adopting more sustainable packaging practices and eliminating the need for unnecessary fill material. By ensuring they send out a product in the proper size container, these companies increase customer satisfaction while helping the environment.

Adopting More Environmentally Friendly Packaging Solutions

Usually, eCommerce companies will have a limited range of boxes, adapting these to fit whatever needs packaging. Consequently, they often need substantial filler material such as packing peanuts, paper or plastic. But it is a solution that is becoming increasingly outdated. Nowadays, more companies are using software to pick the right size of the carton for the order.

Choosing the right size carton reduces the need for corrugated cardboard and reduces the filler used to package the item. Also, choosing the correct sized cartons makes the best use of warehouse space and space on the delivery truck. Overall, the company’s carbon footprint size reduces. Using the proper size of the box helps to ensure the product arrives in perfect condition. When a product is packed into an oversized box, it can arrive damaged, increasing costs and resulting in unhappy and dissatisfied customers.

When plastic is needed as packing material, solutions are available, and which help promote recycling. Some companies are now using reusable packing materials and are looking into innovative ways to repurpose plastic waste materials. Companies that use repurposed or recycled content are seen as greener by consumers, something that helps to increase the feel-good aspect of buying a product.

More consumers are demanding companies become more sustainable, without wishing to lose the convenience of ever-faster delivery times, which is where our software can help.

High-Speed Cartonization with BlackBox

Our BlackBox software is the result of years of R&D, cumulating in a list of features that make the system an integrator’s dream. It includes our state-of-the-art loading algorithm, ensuring the best carton is selected from your stock, order after order in near real-time. A lightning-fast response means BlackBox is ideal for use during checkout and pick carton selection and fulfilment. The software uses true 3-D placement of every item, ensuring an optimal solution.

Because items are packed accurately, they are more likely to arrive in perfect condition without creating a cardboard mountain. Find out how BlackBox can help your eCommerce company achieve a lower carbon footprint, without compromising quality or delivery times by contacting us today.

Overcoming the Challenges of Last Mile Deliveries

Effectively managing last mile deliveries has always been challenging, but never more so than during the past year. It is one of the fastest-growing and often the most complicated part of a supply chain.

Challenges Facing eCommerce Companies

Demand for all types of goods delivery has increased exponentially, creating major headaches for shipping companies trying to satisfy their customers. A considerable part of the demand has come from the huge increase in e-commerce, and these consumers want faster fulfillment and faster last mile deliveries.

Nowadays, more companies offer online shopping, and consumers have a considerable choice as to how they shop, which places more pressure on brands and retailers to ensure they can adequately meet these demands. Increasingly, companies are offering free shipping for a minimum spend which is often quite low, further eating into the all-important bottom line. Then there is the question of ensuring an adequate supply of inventory to meet consumer demand. The pressure is on to create more efficient delivery premises and to have a good logistics network in place, including transportation for last mile deliveries, and which can meet expansion plans.

Ensuring Your Logistics Network is Ready to Meet Demand and Expand

It is important to know your customer base and understand their needs, so you can meet demands and expand when the time is right. These include product selection and delivery times. You may have some products that consistently outsell others. Think about how best to prioritize this inventory and fulfill orders quickly.


While you need an adequate inventory, it can be risky to tie up large amounts of capital with a product that may fail to sell promptly, especially given the fickle nature of consumer demand. Work out the percentage of sales from best-selling inventory and identify items that may be slow to move but need to remain in stock.

Smaller Fulfilment Centers

Adding smaller fulfillment centers nearer to high-density areas can reduce costs and ensure faster delivery for best-selling items. Although adding more fulfillment centers can increase warehousing costs, it will reduce transportation costs and increase sales through more efficient last mile deliveries to customers.

Efficient Packaging

Another important part of the logistics network is the packaging. Inefficient packaging can increase costs greatly, especially for companies that choose to offer free or low-cost shipping. It can also be extremely irritating for customers to receive a poorly packaged item. They may be left with an excess of packing material to dispose of, or the item is more likely to arrive damaged.

This is where MagicLogic can help. One of the main applications of our BlackBox® software is Cartonization. It selects the correct box for eFulfillment orders in near real-time, order after order. Maximum fill rate is its main objective, and it is lightning fast so that the results can be used during checkout. Add sophisticated loading rules into the mix, and you can be sure customers receive well-packaged items in properly sized cartons in perfect condition. Your company saves time and money in packaging costs and fewer returns due to damaged goods.

BlackBox is compatible with any WMS/ERP system, and minimal work is needed to achieve integration. Many companies are already leveraging the power of BlackBox, including multiple Tier 1 logistics service providers. To get an idea of how we could help you, read our case study on Toysmith here.

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