Imagine you’re in the middle of a big packing frenzy, only to discover you can’t find your extra boxes or that your packing tape’s gone for a walk. Soon, team members are grumpy, people are pointing fingers, and that productive rhythm you had is gone. It’s a valuable lesson though, isn’t it? It’s not enough to simply have the right amount of supplies on hand, you’ve got to find ways to properly organize packaging supplies, too.

Thankfully, it doesn’t take too much to do so. If you’ve got the space, setting up proper shelving, dividers and packing areas can do the trick. But even if you’re operating without dedicated organizing equipment, you can certainly use the supplies you’ve got on hand to organize packaging supplies quickly, easily and effectively. Here’s some of your best options.

Corrugated Boxes

The number one packaging choice of pretty much every business everywhere. Don’t forget that as good as boxes are for shipping things, they’re just as good for storing them. If you don’t have space or specific equipment—like shelving or bins—to store your packaging supplies, using the boxes you have on hand will certainly do the trick.

Build the box, reinforce it with a couple extra layers of packing tape, then fold the flaps in. You’ve now created the perfect makeshift bin for whatever you need to place inside it.

TPC Tip: store your unbuilt boxes right side up. This way the fluting in the box walls does the support work for you, minimizing damage and bending over time.

Storage Bins

Corrugated bins let you organize working and packing areas. Made from a single piece of board, they fold and lock into place and provide excellent strength and hold. They can be used to hold rolls of bubble cushion, unbuilt corrugated mailers, or big stacks of kraft bubble mailers.

Plastic bins are simply tougher, more colourful versions of corrugated bins. They’re even better suited to storing small parts and products, along with packing supplies like rolls of labels, tape, and twist-ties. And their colouring allows you to create a simple organizational system.

Dispenser Gadgets

Using dispensers to organize your packaging supplies does two main things: it cleans up your packing area and it improves your productivity. You’ll eliminate the search for supplies, cut down on waste and speed up your packing times, too.

Why struggle with finding scissors to cut your packing tape? Load it into a tape dispenser and—depending on the model you choose—it can hold the roll, measure it, cut it cleanly, and ensure you’ll never lose the end of the roll again.

And while you’re at it, why let the peeling of labels ruin your nails (and your sanity)? Load them into a label dispenser and it’ll hold the roll, peel labels from the liner, and rewind the liner to keep your workspace clear.

Tissue Paper Racks

It’s one of the most attractive packaging options out there. It’s also one of the most delicate.

Tissue paper wrinkles, crinkles, folds and rips quite easily. If it’s not cared for properly, that stack of soft sheets (sometimes coloured, sometimes custom printed) can suffer a lot of damage. Rather than letting it lay flat on a table (and often in the way), let those tissue paper sheets hang from a tissue paper rack.

Built to both protect and showcase those gorgeous sheets, tissue paper racks feature horizontal hanging bars that are staggered in height. This creates an eye-catching “waterfall” effect, and there’s no better way to show it all off.

Imagine rows of coloured sheets organized like a rainbow, shades of blues turning to rich purples, or rows of colours alternating with custom tissue paper (featuring your logo). There’s no question that a tissue paper rack is the way to go.

Finding ways to properly organize packaging supplies can be a hassle, for sure. But with some solid planning (and maybe some of the packaging you’ve already got on hand), your shelves, walkways and packing areas will be clean, safe and ready for when you need them.