The eCommerce industry is growing each year. That’s a lot of sales, a lot of customers, and a lot of competition. Reaching online shoppers before competitors is crucial to your future success. Fast shipping can help you reach more customers, convert sales, and drive more profits.
Why fast shipping reaches more customers
Before delving into how you can use fast shipping to reach more shoppers, let’s take a quick look at why fast shipping reaches more shoppers. Fast shipping can be a significant differentiator for businesses in today’s competitive marketplace, and it often attracts a larger customer base for the following reasons:
- Immediate Gratification: In our digital age, consumers have grown accustomed to instant gratification. Whether streaming a movie or downloading an app, consumers want things quickly. The same applies to online shopping. Fast shipping satisfies the desire for immediate reward, making it more likely for consumers to make a purchase when they know they won’t have to wait long
- Trust and Reliability: Fast shipping is often equated with reliability and efficiency in a company’s operations. If a business can promise and consistently deliver products quickly, customers are more likely to view that business as trustworthy and reliable, leading them to choose it over competitors.
- Competitive Advantage: Especially when competitors offer slower shipping times, fast shipping can be a key factor that sets one business apart from others. For many customers, the speed of delivery can be a deciding factor when everything else (like product features or price) is similar.
- Reduced Cart Abandonment: One of the leading reasons for shopping cart abandonment during online shopping is long delivery times. When customers see that the expected delivery time is too long, they might reconsider the urgency of their purchase or look for alternatives. Offering fast shipping can reduce the chances of this happening, ensuring that more customers complete their purchases.
- Emergencies and Last-Minute Needs: There are times when customers urgently need a product, whether it’s a last-minute gift, an essential component for a project, or an emergency replacement for a broken item. Fast shipping ensures that these customers can rely on a business to meet their immediate needs, broadening the customer base to include those in urgent situations.
By offering fast shipping, businesses can tap into a wide range of customer behaviors and preferences, enhancing their appeal and increasing the likelihood of repeat purchases.
How to reach more customers with fast shipping
There are two ways to boost your customer numbers, using fast shipping:
1. Increase your standard delivery speeds
No one is excited about slow shipping speeds – so why are you still offering them? The majority of shoppers will choose a different retailer because of more delivery options – it’s as simple as that. Remove any delivery speeds over one week from your websites and then offer your customers a variety of delivery speed and cost combinations so that they can choose the option that satisfies their needs without needing to head elsewhere.
2. Sign up for fast shipping programs
Once you’ve increased your delivery options on your website, you need to improve your options on your online marketplaces – and this is where fast shipping programs come in. Online marketplace fast shipping programs power you to reach more customers by shouting loudly and proud about your fast delivery speeds. The main ones are:
3. Transparency is Key
Be clear about shipping times and costs on your product pages. Implement a real-time tracking system and send notifications to customers at each stage of delivery. Inform them about the benefits of speedy shipping and why it might be worth the extra cost. Content like blog posts, infographics, or videos can be instrumental.
4. Promotional Activities
Run marketing campaigns highlighting your options. Offer limited-time promotions, such as free expedited shipping on certain products or when a certain purchase amount is reached. Highlight your the advantages of your advertisements. Use platforms where your target audience hangs out and create engaging content that emphasizes the speed of your deliveries.
5. Leverage Reviews and Testimonials
Encourage satisfied customers to leave positive feedback about your fast shipping. Display these testimonials prominently on your website. Actively seek feedback about your shipping services and continuously work to improve them.
Getting started with fast shipping
As we said, the best part about using fast shipping to reach more customers is that it’s simple. If you’re an online seller not yet set up, here are your options:
1. In-house fulfillment
You can qualify for the above fast shipping programs by fulfilling orders yourself in-house, using your own warehouse, staff, and carrier. This is a great option if you’re just starting out and have a low order volume. The in-house fulfillment requirements for fast shipping programs are:
You must be a Professional Seller who has fulfilled more than 20 Premium Shipping orders over the past 30 days and have:
- An on-time delivery rate of < 96% (99% during your trial);
- A cancellation rate of <1%;
- Added tracking IDs to >84% of all orders; and
- A rolling 30-day 4.5+ feedback rating.
Walmart Free 2-Day Shipping
You must complete a 30-day trial and achieve the following:
- An on-time shipping rate of 95% or above;
- An on-time delivery rate of 95% or above;
- An accurate product’s shipped rate of 99.5% or above;
- A valid tracking rate of 95% or above; and
- A cancellation rate of 1.5% or lower.
eBay Guaranteed Delivery
You must be an eBay Store Subscriber processing more than 100 transactions per year, with:
- A late shipping rate under 5%;
- A same or 1-day handling time; and once on the program
- A minimum 97% on-time handling rate; and
- A minimum 95% on-time tracking upload.
2. Outsourced fulfillment
If you don’t have the expertise, processes, or capacity to achieve the above requirements or maintain fast shipping speeds in-house, you can outsource to a third-party fulfillment partner aligned with your current sales strategy:
If you’re selling high-volume, lightweight, and high-margin stock on Amazon only, your best option is FBA. FBA automatically qualifies you for Amazon Prime by fulfilling orders for you – all you need to do is ship them to Amazon’s warehouses. If you’re selling low-volume, heavy, seasonal or bulky products, you will find it more cost-effective using a Seller Fulfilled Prime fulfillment partner who offers an FBA-like service at a lower cost.
Multi-channel sellers and those looking to grow their retail business should look for a multi-channel fulfillment partner who qualifies sellers for Amazon, Walmart, eBay, and Shopify’s shipping programs.
Reaching more shoppers with fast shipping – final thoughts
Reaching more shoppers with fast shipping is easy. However, handling an increase in orders while continuing to maintain standards is the hard part. Choose a strategy and fulfillment provider that ensures you can meet the delivery times you promise and benefit from the rewards.