The 5 Best Promotional Bags for Your Brand

Published by Steve Hill on

If you took a quick walk around your house right now, we guarantee that you’d find at least one piece of promotional merchandise from a business fair, hotel stay or conference that’s managed to somehow stay with you – even though you’ve completely forgotten who gave it to you.

Whether you’re hosting a product launch or running a giveaway, giving away a bunch of promo material for your business is always going to be the first thing you think of. But what’s the point in spending money on 100 branded pens if they’re going to get lost in someone’s sofa and not bring you any return?

That’s not to say that promotional merchandise isn’t worth the investment. The right promotional merch has been proven to be one of the most effective forms of marketing out there. With a study conducted by the BPMA finding that the ROI on promotional products delivered a better return on investment than radio and outdoor advertising, and is equal to TV and print.

Branded and personalised bags are one of the best forms of promotional merchandise there is.

Let’s say we measure how good our return on investment is based on visibility and potential conversion. Bags are, by design, functional. If a customer needs a shopping bag to avoid the 5p charge at the supermarkets, or, especially if your bag is well designed, they need a casual day bag, that’s your company’s logo getting paraded around town. Not only does this have the benefit of getting your brand seen, but the person wearing it is also implicitly advocating your brand, making it seem both well-liked and trustworthy.

That’s without mentioning the kind of brand loyalty a useful gift like a bag instils in your customer. Every time your bag is used successfully, your customer won’t be able to help but associate with your company positively. But deciding to use a promotional bag is the easy part, the hard part is designing and creating the perfect bag for your brand.

5 Promotional Bag Ideas for Your Brand

Tote Bag

Arguably, the most prolific style of promotional bags out there and for good reason. The tote bag, or the king of bags, can be used for a multitude of different reasons and the flat surface space lends itself stylishly to a number of designs. So, whether you’re a clothing retailer wanting to create a bag that can seamlessly fit into your customer’s existing wardrobes, or an art gallery looking to offer up something more eco-friendly for a book bag, the options are endless.

The main benefit of the tote bag is that it can fit so much inside. Their prevalence at trade fairs can testify to this, with attendees shoving them full to the seams with endless amounts of leaflets and paraphernalia. More useful is that it can be used every day to carry groceries home or books to uni, it can even double up as a beach bag to carry towels, swimwear and sunscreen.

The tote bag can be essentially used again and again, across a wide array of different functions, making it one of the most versatile bags on this list and guaranteeing that your logo is going to get a lot of time in the public eye. Not only that but for companies with a more ethical mindset, the tote mitigates the consistent use of plastic bags. With its ecological epoch amplified by the wide choice of materials available to construct it, such as organic cotton or recycled fabric.

Laptop Bag

A laptop bag isn’t as versatile as the tote, but for the right audience, it can be inherently more useful. These days you’d be hard-pressed to find someone without a laptop, and as tablets and laptops get lighter and easier to carry around, the need for a trustworthy case to protect your tech on a long commute becomes more important. Even so, a carry case is often the last thing people think to buy.

Offering a laptop bag, whether as a small gift with purchase or to connect better with your remote workers, provides your audience with a valuable and extremely useful service. A quality laptop bag can have a long life and stay with your consumers long after they’ve left your premises. And with more employees working off premises than ever before, your laptop bag is a subtle yet effective platform to promote your business.

Holdall Bag

The holdall, or duffel, is an excellent practical bag. The perfect size for making an unobtrusive drop off of a large cash ransom, or packing for a weekend away, a holdall is large enough to carry a considerable amount of baggage – without the need to drag around an unwieldy suitcase. Plus, unlike a suitcase, a holdall can be compressed when empty.

Holdalls can be highly successful in both adding value to your consumer’s lives and marketing your business. From gyms to holiday providers, to camera equipment rental services; if your customers would appreciate a no-nonsense bag to carry around their worldly possessions, you can’t go wrong with the duffel.

For example, if you’re holding an event for the launch of your new yoga studio, why not hand out a branded bag for your potential customers to transport their gear.

Drawstring Bag

The drawstring bag may not have been the sexiest of bags in the past, but with sportswear returning to cool in a big way, the humble gym sack could be your brand’s ticket to the tastemakers.

Although most people over the age of 20 will have memories of carting their muddy football spikes and school P.E. kit in these nylon bags, high-end British designers like Burberry have jumped on the nostalgia wagon and swapped traditional handbag shapes for the simplicity of a drawstring. Because the construction of the bags is so minimal, there’s plenty of space for you to stamp on your branding.

If a duffel bag is too large, but your customers still need an eminently practical option to carry around their belongings, the drawstring is the perfect option. And, for the bonus, they’re usually made out of waterproof material, making them ideal for outdoor sporting brands.


Over the years, backpacks have graduated beyond simply being the university student’s BFFL and PPE from the weight of twelve-tonne textbooks, to being a genuinely fashionable accessory. Whether your customers will by hiking across the Peak District, or walking through the streets of London, backpacks can be both functional and stylish and can come in a range of designs and fabrics to prove it.

Ranging from highly resistant polyester to durable and weather resistant nylon, and even more fashionable fabrics like leather and vinyl, a backpack can be made to carry heavy duty camping equipment, or just a phone, book and wallet. Its versatility and popularity across a range of different customer bases is the backpack’s winning feature.

You can even pimp out your backpack with a number of different features to make life more comfortable for your customers. If you’re a skateboard retailer, why not add in some board loops, or reinforced straps and enhanced hip padding for the perennial hiker. Out of all the promotional bags mentioned so far, a well-designed backpack might be the easiest sell to influencers and consumers, no matter the industry.

The most important thing to keep in mind when creating a promotional bag is that it’s relevant, and more importantly, useful, to your consumer demographic. If that’s in the design, or the construction, keep your ideal customer at the heart of every decision you make in building your promotional bags – and keep the cold hard marketing second. Remember, the more they like it, the more they use it; and the more they use it, the more exposure you’re receiving.

Still not found what you’re looking for?

Check out our 5 runner-up ideas for interesting branded bags…

  • Bottle Bag
  • Product specific bag
  • Lunch boxesMake-up
  • BagWash Bag
  • Tablet Sleeve

To learn more about the endless possibilities of branded bag design and Manufacturer and supplier of bespoke bags, give us a contact us on +44 (0)1225 66 79 79, or check out our promotional bag gallery for inspiration.

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