Staying Competitive with E-Commerce Shipping

Businesses today are heavily relying on selling things online. Your company may have been doing this for years already and you’re always coming up with more strategies on how to increase your bottom line, but have you thought of growing your business by effectively coming up with some efficient and impactful shipping strategies?blur-connection-ecommerce-230544

Increase your margins by taking a look at the shipping companies you’re using, whether it’s the post office or another carrier. Those are the first steps in seeing how much is being spent each day, week or month on shipping costs. Take a deeper dive and see how much you’re spending on packing materials such as boxes, tape, labels and void fill. All those little things add up and can cost your company a pretty penny and affect your bottom line.

We have come up with a quick list on our E-Commerce Shipping Best Practices:

  • Hire the Right Staff: All departments in your company are an integral part to the shipping department.
  • Set Goals: Offering flat rate shipping to increasing profitability, make sure to announce the goal to the team and measure each step!
  • Set a Shipping Strategy: Free shipping may attract a lot of customers, but is it too costly and is hurting your profit margins?
  • Start Now: You need to start somewhere, so make a plan now.

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Today we are going to give you a quick overview of all the main parts to staying competitive in today’s market: E-commerce, however, we are focusing on the shipping aspect of your company.

  1. Hiring the Right Staff: If your staff doesn’t care whether your merchandise gets shipped out at all, everyone suffers. You want the right people on your team that will make sure that not only your merchandise gets shipped out correctly and efficiently, but also packed and protected so you have a low return rate.

Outside of the Shipping department we have Marketing, Web Design as well as Customer Service. Each department should be aiming for the same goal, which should be clear and attainable. For Marketing, we are talking about the message you are sending to your customers, whether it’s free shipping to increase orders or draw new customers. When it come to Web Design, this one is an important one. Make sure that your shopping cart is easy to navigate and that shipping options are clearly marked. You want to make sure that your customer doesn’t bounce out of the shopping cart because that means loss in sales. Lastly, what about Customer Service? Your Customer Service team needs to be in the loop about all the ins and outs of what shipping promotion is being offered so when a customer calls with a question, they can answer right on the spot, giving your customer the best service around.

  1. Set Goals. Let’s say the goal you set for your company is to improve operational efficiency and decrease costs. Did you know that you can start looking at your shipping department and start right there?

Here are some key topics to think about:
a) How much are you spending on packing materials?

  1. b) How much storage space do your packing materials take up in your warehouse?
  2. c) How many returns do you get from damaged products due to poor packing materials?

Not sure what options are best for your warehouse? AirSaver can help you determine whether or not Air Pillows are right for your products. For a free Cost Analysis, contact 1-800-782-9008 or email us at info@airsaverpack.com.

  1. Set a Shipping Strategy. Work with your team to see what shipping strategies will work for your company. If free shipping is the right way to go, make sure to measure this strategy to ensure that you are converting more customers and increasing profitability. Try the free shipping strategy for a limited period of time and track any spikes in sales. Perhaps free shipping is too costly and isn’t the right strategy right now, so you may want to experiment with flat rate shipping. Don’t forget you can offer faster shipping if your customers are looking for that or sign your customer’s up for a shipping program if they have the right volume of orders.
  2. Start Now. What’s stopping you from strategizing today and measuring the efficiencies of your company? It’s easy to track sales, but don’t forget about tracking the costs of shipping as well as costs of shipping materials.
    We go into more detail with the specific packing materials: peanuts, bubble wrap, paper in our other blogs, so make sure to check those out.

    PRO TIP: Look beyond brand-name carriers to save on expedited deliveries, those large carriers don’t always offer the best rates all around.

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