20 April 2021

How to Find a Reliable Shipping Company

When thinking of an ideal online store, the first point that comes to the minds of most sellers is how the store will look. They also consider the style, color scheme, products, and how they will offer a wonderful shopping experience. Afterward, they start considering how to increase the store’s online visibility.

Attracting quality traffic to your store is important. But finding a reliable shipping company to offer excellent service to your customers will help you gain customer loyalty. A user’s experience does not rely on shopping alone. After reaching your store, selecting the product(s), and making the order, the experience does not end there.

A vital part of it is the shipping activity. Therefore, it is important to hire a trusted courier service that can offer reliable shipping services to your clients, leaving them with smiles. This is usually one factor that many e-commerce businesses underestimate. You can click here to find out how to grow your e-commerce store.

Some business owners do not consider what happens the moment a product leaves their warehouse to the client’s location. When it is just a single order each day, it is not a problem; but when you start receiving 20 orders every day, the logistics become quite complex. Hence, there is a probability that you will make mistakes in clients’ orders.

Tips for Selecting a Shipping Service for Your Online Business

When you assign someone to deliver a product by hand, that person is seen as the physical representation of your business. Now, if a shipping company does not deliver the products appropriately, it is you who will get a bad reputation.

Therefore, you need to establish a solid partnership with a good shipping company. Here are some tips to help you find one:

1. Logistics Cycle

This refers to the amount of time it will take you to prepare the products for shipping and when they will finally get to your customer. This can go in two ways. 

First, the courier takes care of all logistics – provides a warehouse, manages the stock, does product pickup, packages and labels the product, and then delivers it to the customer. Second, the online store owner takes care of warehousing as well as product preparation. After that, the courier will pick up the package for delivery. This is common among small online businesses.

2. Reliability

Before you choose a delivery company for your store, ensure you read the fine print. Do your research and make sure they are trustworthy and can offer certain security and guarantees when you use their services. Also, they should deliver goods on time and handle packages properly.

3. Integrated Logistics

Some companies offer integrated logistics like product shipping, labeling, packaging, preparation of order picking, stock warehousing, and product receipt. This service is an invaluable aspect of an online business model. However, it still depends on the kind of store you operate.

4. Delivery Time

There should be a balance between the real delivery time and other logistics. It is better to inform your customers that they will get their products within 24 to 48 hours when they will likely arrive within 8 to 10 hours. In case there is a problem or delay, you will have enough time to fix the issue and deliver within your promised timeframe.

Additionally, some customers want their package to arrive within the shortest possible time. As a good practice, you can offer express delivery to such customers at a higher price. 

Every delivery service has a schedule for pickups, and you must consider that. Ensure you enquire about the available options, delivery times, reception logistics, and hours. Also, ask the courier how much notice they want from when you request a pickup to when the products actually arrive at the customer’s destination.

5. Coverage

The company will offer coverage depending on where your clients live. So if you deliver only within your area, you will not experience inconvenience when it comes to coverage. For instance, if you run your online store from New York, it is only ideal to look for packing and shipping services in NYC since they already cover that location.

However, when there is a need to expand your customer base outside your area (international or national shipments), you want a service that can meet your needs. Also, they should guarantee coverage as well as reliable delivery through their branch office in the location you are delivering goods to.

Furthermore, the company you choose should be one that already offers national coverage. It will help your business if they have a fixed price for national delivery. And it is even better if they are partnering with international delivery companies in case you get an international order.

If you decide to use well-known international delivery services like DHL or FEDEX, ensure they give you their price ratio concerning volumetric weight and destination. This will help you integrate the price in your online store’s pricing system. 

Most international delivery companies already have a stable shipping system, integrated logistics, and shipping tracking. Therefore, you can expect an integrated technology service based on the type of online store you operate.

6. Price

Offering competitive pricing is important. Again, the cost of shipping might be the gap between winning one new customer and losing them due to high delivery costs. However, selecting a cheap shipping option may just be a double-edged sword because cheap does not signify high-quality service.

When you select a cheap service, you are at risk of late deliveries, lost goods, or even damaged on arrival products. As a result, your customers will be unhappy. So what do you do?

Let’s say you sell fresh coffee grounds online. A high-quality 250g bag goes for $10, which is quite reasonable. But when you check the cost of delivery, it is $5 per order. For an average customer, it may ruin the experience. 

However, you can offer free delivery on a minimum number of orders. This will encourage the person to order more products since you are compensating them. Furthermore, the delivery cost may vary based on some factors, which are:

The Weight and Package Volume

The tariff varies on the volume of each product, which is the weight calculation based on dimensions (height, length, and width). 

The Distance Between the Company to the Point of Delivery

The shipment cost differs according to the location: international, local, regional, or national. As you continue receiving orders from customers, the cost may decrease. Some companies adapt shipment costs based on the shipping volume. Hence, they lower the price for more shipments.

7. Problems and Return Policies

Sometimes, a customer may not be at home when the package arrives. So you should find out how the delivery company reacts when faced with such situations. 

Will they contact the customer to schedule another delivery time? Will they return the following day and try to deliver the package again? Will they drop a notice in the mailbox, asking the customer to visit the courier office for the pickup? Or will they send the package back to you since they could not deliver it?

Now, what happens if the customer’s order arrives damaged? This is where you should check the company’s policy to know if they cover damages. Also, check how much can be reimbursed for damages.

How Your Online Business Can Save Money on Costs of Delivery

The following are simple tips to help you achieve low-cost product delivery:

1. Automate the Shipping

You can use software to automate the shipping. This saves you money and time. It also guarantees better rates and allows you to free up some human resources. You can then spend your working hours on boosting your store’s visibility and marketing strategies.

2. Always Look Out for Flat Rates

Imagine paying $20 to ship one product when you can spend the same amount delivering a package containing 5 of those same products; it is a bitter pill to swallow. Based on the items in each order and the average value of the order, you can consider the benefits of flat-rate delivery.

That way, you won’t bother about purchasing boxes to package the product or visiting a post office. All you need to do is to inform the shipping company about the order. They will package the products and deliver them to your customers. You can visit https://smallbusiness.chron.com/meaning-flat-rate-shipping-74086.html to read more about flat rate shipping.

3. Offer Free Delivery but with a Minimum Order

Small businesses may not be able to offer free delivery, but it is important to plan for success, not losses. Offering free shipping in addition to a minimum order range helps to reduce your business expenses. 

You can do an “A or B” testing with your customers to understand the value threshold that moves them to order for products. It could be free shipping on orders above $50 or $99.99. You will not only save on delivery costs by establishing a minimum order threshold, but you will also know what drives your customers from website visitors to paying customers.


Your online store can be better if you offer shipping at a reduced price. Also, you want your customers to return and buy more. Therefore, the delivery method you choose must be reliable, timely, and ensure the package gets to the customer in good condition.

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