When it comes to shipping for your customers, there are mainly two types of shipping that you can choose, either Postal or Express services. Apart from the obvious distinction with their names, the price and service levels also differ. We'll go through a quick breakdown of the two so you'll have a clearer understanding of what to expect when you use such services.
The couriers that you've grown to know such as FedEx, DHL, UPS are examples of Express services and have courier networks around the world and operate globally. While on the other hand, postal services are generally operated in part with the national government of the country. For example, Australia Post is the postal courier for Australia, Royal Mail is for UK, USPS is for United States, for a full list check out the wiki page here!
When dealing with these two different types of shipping you can expect two very different types of services. Here are examples of the differences:
- Delivery Time
- Pickup Service
- Tracking Information
- Redelivery Service
- Level Customer Service
- Customs & Duties Clearance
As a general rule, Express couriers normally offer better services and reliability than postal except they also come at a higher cost (As they say, you get for what you pay!). This is an important factor when you are deciding what type of courier service you want to use for your customers as it not only affects your business from a cost point of view, but also affects your customers shopping experience with you.
You should consider the value of your products that you are selling and your customers' expectations with regards to delivery time as well. For example, if you are selling a USB cable for only 5 USD, it would not make sense to use Express courier services where the shipping prices can be more than the cost of the actual product itself. In these cases it would make more sense to use Postal services and you will need to communicate to your customers what to expect. For example, longer delivery times, less comprehensive tracking information and etc.
While on the other hand, if you were selling high-end jewellery it would make more sense to use Express couriers due to the value of the jewellery. Express couriers provide you with more faster deliveries and superior insurance service which means that if there were any instances that the item had issues in transit, it would be quickly resolved. The additional cost of shipping is worth more than the savings you get from using postal due to better service you get with express.
So when choosing a shipping courier service, you have to be careful you choose the right one for your customers. You have to understand what your customers are like, what they expect and also on your side, how much the item costs and is it financially feasible to offer them the express solution!