Many shipping service providers tell you that they can help you safely deliver your packages fast and timely at a low price. It is a common scenario that every eCommerce merchant sees every day. Although some of the shippers can keep up with their promises, a lot of them fail to do so.
It is the best result if a delivery delay occurs. What's worse is that the shipping carrier either delivers a broken package to your customers or loses your packages. The shipping experience is a nightmare for both the merchants and customers.
Customers won't be content with the broken packages. They will either ask for a refund or return the packages, and merchants bear all the costs, including packaging materials, shipping fee, a loss of order, etc. You may reduce the shipping cost but increase the overall operation cost.
Shipping price is one of the factors that you need to take into account, but it is not the only one. How do you qualify a shipping provider as our logistics partner if the price is not the only consideration?
There are 11 questions to ask a shipping carrier before you decide to work with it.
11 Questions For Choosing Shipping Providers
After the customer enters the address and submits the order, the real shopping experience has just begun. The customer's feelings brought by the order delivery will affect customer satisfaction.
Through the following 12 questions, we can obtain the most critical information to evaluate whether the shipping provider is reliable. These questions are also small business shipping tips. Hope you will find them helpful and use them to make your shipping management cost-effective.
1. Does the courier have experience in e-commerce shipping services?
For eCommerce sellers who are just starting to run the business, it is necessary to ask questions about how the carrier handles unexpected orders increase because the growth of your e-commerce orders is unpredictable. It is necessary to ensure that shipping providers can smoothly and efficiently handle unstable order volumes.
2. What Items Are Allowed to Ship?
If the products sold contain batteries, liquids, etc., you need to be careful. Some shipping carriers do not ship certain items, and some may have stricter requirements on product types.
You need to classify the existing products, even if you have discussed with the shipping carrier whether he can handle the products and the products meet the delivery requirements.
Making a product classification list can help you ensure that customers can successfully receive the products.
3. Are There Restricted Areas?
For cross-border eCommerce sellers, they may need to deal with the needs of consumers worldwide, and they need to communicate with international shipping carriers about which regions they can ship.
Generally, developed markets have a comprehensive transportation network. Suppose your eCommerce website is for a specific group of people in a particular country. In that case, you need to learn the regional restrictions in advance to avoid shipping trouble.
4. Where Is the Warehouse or the Fulfillment Center?
Before asking this question, we need to check the country or region with the highest sales volume and choose a logistics company with warehouses in this region to deliver the products to the customers quickly.
Suppose we have a wide range of sales. In that case, we can choose a shipping provider with strong transportation capabilities in areas where your sales are the largest.
5. What Is the Shipping Price?
This question is the most critical one. It is necessary to understand the shipping costs of various types of products to avoid opaque pricing.
Clarifying the shipping price can help us reduce the operating costs of your store, and it is also helpful for you to set a competitive product pricing and offer various shipping options.
6. Will the Shipping Carrier Send You the Accurate Shipment Status Information?
Most shipping carriers can provide detailed shipping carrier tracking information, showing the distribution center's shipping estimation time and location.
Online consumers are sensitive to the accuracy of shipping status information. The timely updated logistics information eliminates meaningless after-sales communication and enhances the trustworthiness of the brand.
KeyDelivery shipment tracking software is a convenient tool for tracking orders and gaining more chances to promote your products to your customers.
You can use the universal package tracker software to send your branded package tracking page with product recommendations to your customer when there is a shipment update.
7. What Do Shippers do to Make Sure to Deliver Timely?
When the delivery fails due to some problems, it will cause some damage to our brand reputation, and even cause losses.
This issue is not only limited to sales lost. The loss of customers is not just a single sale lost. This new customer may become a return customer or recommend your brand to their friends and families.
Therefore, shipping providers must have strict management to ensure the product delivery is timely and accurate. The shipping process is a factor you should consider.
8. How Long Will It Take to Complete the Shipping?
Delivery time is what consumers care most about, and it is also a factor that you can use for your store promotion.
In this era of efficiency, you also need to learn efficient shipping methods to meet customer needs. Most of the order delays are caused by the logistics management of the shipper. It would be best to ask the shipping service provider how quickly the order can be processed and packaged for delivery.
9. Do Your Shipping Have Return Services?
Return service is required for some brands serving high-value customers, but not all shipping providers offer return services.
Not all sellers provide this kind of high-cost service. If you're running a small and medium-sized business, you don't need this service. A free shipping strategy is more suitable for small and medium-sized businesses.
When customers start comparing your price with your competitors, the free shipping offers will add some advantages to your edge.
10. What Should You Do If the Delivery Fails?
For online sellers, it is difficult to avoid the loss of orders during the delivery process. Or the delivery is delayed due to particular circumstances in transportation.
It is necessary to understand the service guarantee provided by the shipping provider, understand how to claim or resolve disputes, and make promises to consumers accordingly.
11. How Does the Cooperation Work for You?
Especially for online sellers who are eager to start a business, the handover of some shipping providers may take some time.
The sooner you can find a fast and straightforward shipping solution, the sooner you can start your eCommerce business.
The best shipping carrier should be the one that suits your business. No matter which carrier choose, you'll eventually build a close relationship with them, and their practices and process will affect your overall shipping costs.
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