Shipping may be overlooked by many small businesses and individuals, such as eBay sellers and other e-commerce businesses. What you charge, how quickly it arrives and how it looks on arrival all reflect on your brand – and your chances for repeat purchasing.
Here’s how to ship more quickly and cost-effectively and look better than your competitors.
1. Boost sales with “free” shipping.
This past holiday season, 56 percent of online transactions included free shipping, according to digital business analytics leader comScore. Free-shipping orders were 30 percent higher in value. And, the free-shipping phenomenon is not limited to online retailers.
You don’t have to give away the shipping, though. Consider utilizing one of these ideas:
Create VIP clubs with free shipping for high-value shoppers; offer free shipping only intermittently or only for high-margin products; or set a minimum threshold higher than the average transaction size.
Since free shipping drives revenue and loyalty, some businesses allocate shipping to their often-larger marketing budgets, instead of operations.
Pad a little extra onto product prices to offset much of the shipping fee.
2. Pack shipments sustainably.
Thoughtful packaging makes a big impression. A customer who sees a neatly and safely packaged item is sure to notice the care put in to their purchase. It also gives a sense of professionalism and commitment to your customers.
3. Prepare shipments better.
Shipping is actually a multistep process: selecting the right size box and packaging materials, confirming order accuracy, generating and applying packing slips, sealing, applying labels and so on. It’s easy for one poor decision – a box too-small for the weight, for example – to drive up costs. The solution: Ensure that your packing team is equipped with the highest quality materials, including boxes, tape, loose-fill, bubble wrap, and any packaging other materials they may need. If you are a one-man show.. such as an eBay seller… and you need to ship something fragile, consider taking your item to a professional packing and shipping store. You can have your item professionally packed and shipped, saving you the time, worry, and hassle of doing it yourself.