eCommerce shipping costs can make or break an online merchant’s success. A good eCommerce shipping process can give your business a key edge over the competition, but there are many important factors to consider for proper shipping—or else you can lose customers and revenue fast!
Shipping costs are an important factor that can cut deeply into your profits before you realize it. Cutting your shipping costs will not only save your business money, but also attract more customers. Just about all online buyers prefer to shop from stores where shipping costs are minimal and transparent, meaning that they should be kept to a minimum for the benefit of both your business and your customer base.
To that end, here are a few ways to prevent overspending on your eCommerce shipping costs!
How To Stop Overpaying for eCommerce Shipping
eCommerce shipping costs can add up fast. Fortunately, by keeping these tips in mind, you can avoid overpaying—keeping your profit margin healthy and customers happy in the process!
1. Negotiate with Your Couriers
Always be sure to negotiate your eCommerce shipping costs with your couriers to see if you can take advantage of any volume discounts they offer. This becomes easier over time as your online sales grow and your volume steadily ramps up.
2. Have Numerous Shipping Box Sizes Available
Box dimensions can make a major difference when it comes to eCommerce shipping costs. Be sure that the product you’re shipping fits properly into the shipping box itself. In other words, don’t ship a coffee mug in a four-foot box! Doing so will cost your company a higher shipping costs in the long run.
3. Be Sure of the Weight and Dimensions of Your Shipments
Wrong information can cost you money when it comes to eCommerce shipping!
Knowing the exact weight and dimensions of your shipment will ensure you get charged for exactly what you ship. But if you don’t know the exact dimensions and weight and just enter an approximate calculation, it could turn out to be substantially higher than what the dimensions and weight are in reality.
For example, if you don’t know the exact weight and dimensions of your items, then you may order larger size boxes or flat rate boxes and have to pay extra charges for the weight you didn’t actually ship.
Bottom line: know your products!
4. Take Advantage of Free Shipping Boxes
Did you know that you may be able to get free shipping boxes from couriers if you create an account with them?
These boxes, it should be noted, are usually relatively small and therefore not useful for shipping larger items. Still, it's a great way to cut down on your eCommerce shipping costs overall, especially if you sell large quantities of smaller-sized products.
5. Figure Out Which Packing Materials Work Best for Your Products
There are plenty of packaging materials out there to choose from—packing peanuts, Styrofoam, newspapers and soft foam just to name a few!
Experiment with what works best when shipping out your products. Always be sure that your items will be well-protected during transit, but also keep shipping costs in mind. If a certain packing material works just as well as another, more expensive option, use it!
6. Buy Packing Materials Straight from Your Manufacturer
Likewise, try not to buy your packing materials from courier companies, as they’re generally more expensive. If you want to cut eCommerce shipping costs, buy your shipping boxes and packaging materials straight from the manufacturer to save money.
7. Use Original Product Packaging
Sometimes the original packing of the product can be used as the shipping package.
Just be sure that it’s durable enough to endure the shipping process without damaging the product. Ultimately, using the original box can save you a lot of money that would otherwise be used for other packing materials.
8. Outsource Your Shipping
Sometimes the eCommerce shipping process requires more time and workforce resources than your company can muster. If this happens, it may be time for outsourcing!
Yes, outsourcing costs money upfront, but it can save your company money in the long run by leaving your shipping in the hands of seasoned professionals. Many fulfillment centers and 3PL companies are available all throughout the world to assist with this.
You can find many solutions for your small business eCommerce shipping if you look around! Take the time to research your options and choose what works best for your company.
9. Invest in the Right Equipment
Another very effective way to cut shipping costs is to invest in the right equipment required in the eCommerce shipping process. Invest in a good printer to print your labels quickly, accurately and affordably and an accurate scale to weigh your packages. Similarly, packing material dispensers and packing stations are also important if you’re looking to cut your shipping costs.
10. Don’t Overlook the Necessities
Cutting shipping costs doesn’t mean you have to overlook what’s most important. If you’re shipping fragile items or heavy items, make sure they’re packed accordingly. If required, get them insured—especially if the item is expensive!
If you overlook these aspects, you might end up paying far more than the amount you save in overlooking them. Failing to properly pack a shipment of fragile and expensive glassware, for example, can cost your business a lot in the long run if they’re delivered damaged to the customer.
Simply put—don’t cut any corners when it comes to eCommerce shipping!
Avoid Overpaying on eCommerce Shipping
Keeping your eCommerce shipping costs to a minimum can greatly benefit your online business. By avoiding overpaying for your eCommerce shipping, your online store can keep its profits healthy and customers satisfied!
The best way to save on shipping costs? With Easyship, of course!
Let us be your partner when it comes to small business eCommerce shipping and order fulfillment. We offer 250+ shipping solutions from our global courier network at discounted rates as well as useful tools like our shipping rates calculator, which lets you evaluate and compare the different shipping services available to find the cheapest, fastest and best value solutions.
Stop overpaying on eCommerce shipping costs - sign up for Easyship today!