E-commerce businesses need to focus on the quality of their shipping services. Savvy retailers in the online retail market know it's not just about sending customers a box. Shipping gives you the opportunity to impress customers with neat, well-packaged items that arrive at their address earlier or on time than expected. However, guaranteeing this service every time can be complicated and expensive as you try to avoid shipping errors. Here are some helpful tips for ecommerce businesses and a breakdown of how our 3PL can help you avoid common shipping mistakes.
1. Choose the right packaging size
Packaging is very important because it protects your product during shipping. It also builds your brand image and identity, and based on size and weight, it determines how much the carrier will charge to ship the product. Packaging and size are important aspects to consider for any item you plan to ship. If you're trying to save money and pack your product in a box that's too small or doesn't have enough padding and bubble wrap, you risk damaging the product. A good rule of thumb for package size is to choose a box with two inches of buffer space.
2. Don't overpay for shipping
Take the time to research your shipping costs and you can avoid wasting money. Some shipping companies have a network that allows them to offer faster deliveries, weekend deliveries, discounts on fuel bills, and more. You may have to pay for these additional services, which is why it's important to know about them in advance. Only choose packages or carriers that bring features of value to you and your customers. Don't waste your money on services you don't need.
3. Prepare for change
Shipping prices and policies change every year, and while they tend to change at the beginning of the year, they can still happen mid-year. Always be prepared for changes in your shipping company. For example, USPS recently lowered the price of electronic postage, while UPS and FedEx now charge by DIM weight.
4. Check if the address is correct
One of the most common shipping mistakes is sending an order to the wrong customer. It is important that the shipper takes the time to ensure that the correct destination address stated on the bill/invoice is reflected on the packaging so that the package ends up where it is needed. Even the wrong zip code can lead to a lengthy process of tracking shipments and sending them to the right customer.
5. Pay attention to customer reviews
You should always pay attention to what customers say about your products and services. Their feedback can help you improve your service and point out where you need to make adjustments. For example, if your customers are dissatisfied with delivery times, you might consider offering better shipping options. If your customers always compliment you on your fast delivery times, it's a sign that your service meets and exceeds their expectations.
6. Track your shipping supplies
Managing product inventory is critical to optimizing your warehouse, but what about your shipping supplies? These supplies are necessary to send customer orders, so if you don't pay attention to the amount of boxes, packing supplies, tape, and labels you have, you may Delaying customer orders while waiting for more shipping supplies. As you track your shipping supplies, you can create reorder points to keep more supplies coming in when you need them.
7. Review your shipment
Research shows that 10% of packages arrive late, but shippers only refund a portion of them. By conducting regular audits of your shipments, you can be compensated for any carrier-shipper errors, including late deliveries, wrong charges for Saturday deliveries, duplicate charges, and address errors. Checking each shipment yourself can be time-consuming, which is why it can be beneficial to partner with a third-party logistics provider and automate this process.
8. Automate your shipping
If your business is growing, or if you have a lot of product inventory and customer orders, you won't have time to manually create shipping labels. Automating this process can save you valuable time. With e-commerce shipping software, most of the manual tasks involved (such as re-entering addresses) can be automated. You can also create custom invoices and packing slips to give your packaging and products a more professional look. Automation can save you hours a day and make the shipping process smoother and more accurate for you and your customers.
How PFC Ship can help you improve your shipping process
Choosing the right dropship provider is a big decision, which is why you can benefit from 3PL advice and connections. They will provide the services needed to exceed customer expectations, better track your inventory and supplies, prepare for and anticipate changes, and more. They help you thrive in challenging situations and predict mistakes so you can make changes to avoid them. When it comes to shipping, there is little room for error if you want your business to grow and be profitable, so contact PFC Ship and ask for help as soon as possible.
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