How to reduce the shipping costs of your online shop - The best tips for small businesses!
Shipping expenses can eat up a big chunk of an online store's budget, impacting profits. But there are smart ways to reduce those costs without compromising service.
Our experts have rounded up the best advice to help you save on shipping in your online business!
1. Find Affordable Shipping Services
It might sound obvious, but it's important. Check out different shipping companies and get lots of quotes. If you do a lot of shipping, you can often talk them into giving you a better deal. Ask your current shipper if they can give you a better price too.
And don't forget, if your store is busy in a certain area, see if there's a local shipping company there. They might have cheaper rates because they don't have to travel as far.
2. Use Flat Rates
Some shipping companies offer flat rates. That means you pay a set price for each package, no matter how big or heavy. Depending on what and how much you're shipping, this could be cheaper than the usual rates.
And with flat rates, it's easier to figure out how much you'll spend on shipping.
3. Try To Offer Free Shipping
A lot of online stores give free shipping for orders over a certain amount. This can work really well, making customers buy more to get the free shipping. Just make sure you're still making enough money.
Remember, though, don't offer free shipping for expensive options like super fast or international shipping. Stick to regular shipping if you can. That way, you won't lose too much money.
4. Use Pickup Locations
You can save money by sending lots of packages to one place where customers can pick them up.
This avoids lots of individual trips to homes, which can be expensive. These pickup spots usually have good deals too.
5. Go Green with Packaging
The more you ship, the more packaging you use. Look for materials that are recycled, like paper, instead of new stuff or plastic. There are options that use recycled materials and they're cheaper.
At LOGSTA, we only use materials that are good for the environment, and it works!
6. Pack Smarter
When you send stuff, it's all about size and weight. Lighter packages and saving even a little weight can cut costs. Don't use too much packaging, and think about what you really need to keep the stuff safe.
Maybe you can use lighter materials or smaller boxes to make things weigh less and take up less space.
7. Use Self-Shipping Services
Various self-shipping offerings are provided by package couriers, logistics companies, and fulfillment providers. These programs or web apps allow you to create, print, and attach shipping labels to packages yourself for direct shipment. This can be a cost-effective alternative to traditional shipping services, as you're taking some of the work off their hands.
For example, our free "Send it Yourself" in the LOGSTA Connector. With this service, you can organize your orders, choose from various shipping providers and options, print labels, and send your packages at our favourable shipping rates. We currently offer this service in Austria, Germany and France.
This can significantly save costs!
8. Simplify How You Handle Shipping
Look at every step of how you get stuff out to customers:
- From the time they order,
- to how you keep things in storage,
- how you track stock,
- how you pack,
- who does what,
- how you handle money,
- to actually sending things out.
- What could be done better?
- What slows things down?
- What costs the most?
- What takes the most time?
- Can anything that's done by hand be done by machines?
- Where do mistakes happen?
As you ship more, making the process smoother gets really important. And time is money, as they say:
Make your system better, fix small problems, and make things automatic so you can send stuff cheaply and easily!
Listen to what customers say and take it seriously. They'll tell you what's working and what isn't. In the world of selling online, these things never stop evolving!
9. Cut Down on Returns
Lots of things being sent back costs more because of the work it takes. If you're okay with customers sending things back, it might cost even more. It's good to offer free returns if you can.
Look at what people return the most and think about if you should still sell those things. Tell customers the rules for sending stuff back clearly on your website. This stops misunderstandings and extra costs.
And if you show really good pictures and explain stuff well, fewer people will send things back.
10. Consider Outsourcing Your Logistics
Maybe you're drowning in packages and your place is full, and your workers can't keep up...
It could be a good idea to get a fulfillment company like LOGSTA to handle your shipping. Even if you don't have too many packages, it's still worth it to let a pro take over. They'll handle storage, packing, and getting stuff out—everything from getting orders to customers' doors.
This can make shipping way easier, so you can focus on selling and making your online store grow.
This article can help you decide if getting outside help with shipping is a good idea.
To Sum Up:
There are many ways for online store owners to spend less on shipping without disappointing customers.
- Choose the right shipping rates,
- optimize your packaging,
- utilize parcel shops,
- offer free shipping, and
- automate your processes.
- Utilizing self-shipping solutions or logistics services from fulfilment providers can significantly reduce your effort and costs, maximizing your profits!
Got more questions? Feel free to ask us without any pressure.
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