Shipping and shopping go hand-in-hand nowadays, which is why making sure your shipping strategy is as effective as possible should top your priority list. To begin, evaluate your current shipping efforts to help strengthen your parcel efficiency.
To assess your shipping strategy, ask yourself the following questions:
1. Are you confident the shipping options you currently offer are what your customers want?
Whether it’s same-day, overnight, ground or express shipping, the options you offer matter. Identify what shipping preferences are ideal for your target audience, then aim to please when it comes to offering shipping choices that cater to your core demographics. This should include a review of your pricing options, as well, when it comes to shipping. Among the choices you may currently offer include a flat rate shipping fee or real-time rates based on package weight, departing and destination countries, tracking information, insurance and all other factors that influence shipping. Reviewing these options can help you identify whether or not they align with your customer preferences.
2. Is free shipping among the shipping options you offer?
While shipping is definitely not free to the shipper, it’s important for shippers to consider offering free shipping as a way to stay relevant in an increasingly competitive marketplace. Offering free shipping can be incorporated into your shipping strategy in a variety of ways, including the option for free shipping based on a minimum order. Other ways to introduce this as an option includes increasing product prices to cover the costs of shipping or to at least cover partial costs of shipping. Some businesses also opt to pay for shipping out of the margins made on inventory sold in an effort to retain customers and attract new ones alike. Either way, incorporating free shipping among your shipping options can help attract and retain customer sales – something any business can appreciate.
3. Do you offer a multi-carrier shipping strategy? Why or why not?
Incorporating a multi-carrier strategy can help companies enhance their overall shipping efficiencies while reducing parcel overhead. Through data, the most favorable carriers based on transit time, pickup locations and more can be identified – ultimately helping shippers to reduce unexpected fees and meet shipping expectations. As you review your existing shipping strategy, consider how multi-carriers may make sense for your business.
4. Are you satisfied with your parcel overhead expenses or would you prefer to save more money?
Often, companies settle for quick strategies versus the right strategies that can best support their unique shipping needs. Keeping this in mind, evaluating your current parcel overhead can not only help you identify ways to strengthen your shipping efforts but also ways to save you money. Among the most beneficial ways to do this include incorporating a parcel auditing strategy into your shipping efforts, such as Refund Retriever offers. By auditing your weekly FedEx and UPS invoices, Refund Retriever detects issues with your shipments, applies for refunds identified that the carrier may not do otherwise and then confirms those refunds appear in your account. The best part? Refund Retriever simply charges a percent of the value of the refunds which are detected and verified – helping your business both save money while also eliminating a responsibility from your own to-do-list.
5. Do you work with shipping experts to help manage your shipping needs?
Working with experts can offer you guided insight on best practices across all shipping touchpoints, including warehouse management, fulfillment, ecommerce processing, parcel delivery options, shipping fees and more. Companies that include BigCommerce, ShipWorks, 3d Cart, Shopify and SkuVault are each examples of expert resources to refer to. For a full list of suggested solutions to help your shipping business, click here.
Finally, remember that as your business grows and the marketplace evolves your needs will undoubtedly shift. Understanding the variables that impact your shipping strategy will be among the best ways to keep your business strong and healthy – ultimately helping you achieve long-term success, as well. Aim to review your shipping process at least bi-annually but don’t worry about having to do it alone. Through expert resources and real-time data, your journey towards shipping success will become stronger and less difficult along the way.