The holidays are coming and with it the season of gift giving. More and more consumers are purchasing their presents for their loved ones online versus taking on other customers in the store. This means that shipments from retail shops to those that bought them will increase tremendously over the next few weeks. Here are a few ways that your e-commerce benefits from freight shipping.
Find the Best Rate
When you prepare for the holidays, study your freight contracts with each of the companies that you use. Find out what they charge according to weight and distance then compare it to other shipping companies. You might want to compare what your costs were from the years previous and ask for a bid from their competitors. Many well known companies determine their price per origin to destination and the weight of the package. Once you have chosen a delivery company to go with, you need to calculate how you will pass these charges to your customer. Providing a general estimate of shipping costs when a customer chooses an item from your website might influence them to purchase it from you instead of moving onto another e-retailer. Remember to add in the amount it would be for a worker to package the item as a handling charge towards the freight price.
Look Back At History
Knowing what you did last year for shipping will help determine what you should do this year. Recall the sales reports from that particular period of time and see what exactly your freight expenses were. Analyzing the data will allow you to see where you spent the most money and in what areas you spent the least. This can include not only the shipping itself but the internal systems within your company that prepares the order to go out. It is possible that to decrease costs you may need to work on making the procedures within your own departments more efficient. A way to involve your employees in solving this problem is to offer an incentive program for suggestions on how to make processes work smoother. The staff member with the best idea can win some type of prize if their proposal is implemented and works well.
Make Things Simple For Your Customer
Once you have your shipping options sorted out and in place, you need to set up a checkout for your website that is user friendly for your customer. Utilize as few screens as possible between putting items in the cart to finalizing the transaction. Give your customers as many affordable options as you can for shipping and be as clear as possible with what each level of freight will cost them. Some of your clients may need the item as quickly as you can ship it so give them the option of next day if your company can meet such a demand. Make the payment area as concise as possible while getting all the information that you need. Be certain that you test your checkout page again and again so that you know it is quick and convenient as well as works well without locking up. When you are confident with your website, you can launch or update it so that your customers can start shopping.
Remember Your Name
Now that your customer has made a purchase with your company on your online store, be sure that you respond with gratitude. Including a note of thanks, swag, or a freebie item you need to clear from your warehouse will give your client incentive to come back to your site and buy more items. Ensure that their items are packaged properly so that they arrive safe by instituting clear protocols to your employees on how you want it done. This will make for a happy customer as well as cut down on the cost of returns and claims you will have to make with the shipping provider. If you have the money in your marketing budget, purchase packaging with your logo on it so that they have another reminder of your company and services. You can also purchase labels and stickers that you can add to a package to do this also. Name recognition and a pleasant experience will encourage your customer to shop your website more often and increase your sales.
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