Ecommerce is growing at a rapid rate because it provides convenience to shop from the comfort of the home or office. And the success of any eCommerce is due on the shipping and order fulfillment of products. Shipping has become an essential part of eCommerce shopping for both B2B and B2C. The ability of ordering online and getting the product on time has successfully boosted more sales and conversion. Also, the Magento store owners can provide order tracking facility to their customers to boost their shopping experience further.
Integrating an effective shipping strategy can be the most important step you may take to grow your business further. Many brands start with a simplistic approach toward shipping, but successful eCommerce owners choose to differ from them. They employ effectively strategized shipping methods that differentiate them from the rest. And that’s what makes them a powerful eCommerce brand. Coming up with strategic shipping methods is not a hard step. But the hard thing is how your company can act on them?
And to answer that, we have come up with this article. Here, we will share some tips and strategies that will help you to implement effective shipping methods. Below are 8 Best eCommerce shipping strategies you need to know for the success of your brand.
Make your Order Fulfillment and Return Policies Clear
Shipping strategies are like marketing tools that you can utilize more efficiently. It starts from your eCommerce site and becomes the first step for your customers to transact on your eCommerce site. And to attract the attention of your customers, policies like order fulfillment and order return should take the front and center of your site. Make sure that any promotional shipping offers like free shipping is the first thing your customers should see when entering your eCommerce site.
One thing you need to make sure is that all the guidelines and information are easily found and clearly stated. Because it would be easy for you to capitalize on an eCommerce website that is easy to navigate and provides incredible user experience. The key factor for the success of any shipping method is how flexible it is. Adapt new model and shipping strategies as your eCommerce brand evolves. So, offer more than one shipping method to your customers to fulfill orders on time.
Offer Free Shipping
As per one study in 2018 by Pitney Bowes on Global eCommerce found that 91% of the visitors would leave an eCommerce store if not provided with fast and free shipping. This huge statistic was devastating for many eCommerce brands. But soon most eCommerce store owners realized that free shipping is more than just a shipping option. They started to leverage it as a marketing tool to attract more customers. But free shipping has a side effect and it is that it impacts on your profit margins. It can bring in more sales but it cannot cover the shipping charges you may have to spend.
But there are many ways you can use free shipping for your benefit. You can offer free shipping only if the order value is higher than what you have set. You can use it as a promotional offer for a specific time in a year like around holidays. Or you can offer free shipping at the standard option and for fast delivery, you can charge additional. All of these are great ways and become a great strategy to increase sales for your eCommerce.
Show Live Shipping Rates from a Carrier
Implementing live shipping will help consumers to know how much exactly they have to pay. And for that you can contact your shipping partners such as FedEx, DHL, UPS, etc. Although it is not used as a promotional strategy, it shows the exact amount a consumer has to pay when choosing a shipping method.
Showing live shipping rates would be a great strategy for B2B businesses. Because for B2B businesses, the exact shipping charges depend upon various factors such as quantity, weight, size, the destination of shipping, etc. and precise calculations are indeed necessary. Also, you can add surcharges to cover your costs of packaging or order fulfillment when you implement a live shipping rate strategy.
Table Rate Shipping is a Great Strategy
Table rate shipping is a great strategy eCommerce store owners can implement in their store. It allows you to customize your shipping solutions based on numerous factors. You can configure the table rate shipping method to calculate shipping charges based on the delivery destination, the weight of the product, size of the product, number of items in an order.
For example, the shipping rate would be different for customers that are within a certain radius, and it would be different for customers outside of that radius. You can also charge your customers on how many items they purchase in a single order. If one purchases only a single item, then charges would be different than someone ordering 2 items together. Also, there are a variety of different shipping cost configuration options for you to implement with table rate shipping.
Offer Flat Rate Shipping
Flat rate shipping means you can charge your customers based on fixed added charge or percentage charge. Flat rate shipping comes handy when you want to assign one shipping cost for a product purchase. In flat rate shipping weight, size, and value of the products are not considered for calculating the shipping charges.
Therefore, it gives customers an idea of how much they would be spending upfront. You can also configure the flat rate shipping method to cover all your packing and order fulfillment charges. This shipping method is not a promotional method like free shipping but customers would see the benefits of this method when they have to order big items or spend more on orders.
Mix and alternate Shipping options
The above shipping options are the most popular and frequently used by many businesses. But if you are the one who thinks outside of the box, then you can come up with mixed and alternative options. This strategy can be very effective for your eCommerce business. You can balance your revenue needs and at the same time you can offer promotional plans as well.
E.g, you can offer free shipping with no delivery commitment along with other shipping methods such as chargeable table rate shipping with a 3 to 5 days delivery commitment. Or live rate shipping for overnight or second-day delivery commitment.
Order Online Pickup in Store Shipping
All of the above shipping options are the most popular and used by many eCommerce brands. But offering additional options like order online and pick in store shipping is gaining quite the fame. And also, it is one of the less orthodox shipping strategies that can help you to reduce shipping costs upfronts, which can significantly improve conversions. Ecommerce brands adopting this strategy stand out from the crowd. Therefore, you must adopt it as well. Amazon also has adopted the same and their sales and traffic have increased since then.
Go International with Shipping
If you are considering widening your circle of eCommerce business, then it is about time you also take care of shipping for the international market. We understand that this is a huge step for any eCommerce business. But it holds the potential to make your shipping and eCommerce business a profitable one.
First, you have to do some digging (not the actual one) and research about import and export laws and restrictions of the regions you are considering to expand your business. Take care of any additional documentation or custom duties. Find the best suitable carrier and of course the alternative options of the same.
You have to consider the necessary factors that contribute to providing a positive shopping experience to your customers. Factors such as providing an ability to track orders to customers is very necessary to make your eCommerce a profitable business. Also, here you have to try a few options and adjust according to them to find the best suitable option for you.
Shipping and order fulfillment is a very critical and challenging part of any eCommerce business. To overcome these challenges you may have to develop the best suitable shipping strategy that works like a charm for you. As the businesses are evolving with time, it is vital that your shipping strategies should evolve. Because with the right mindset and right approach anything is possible.
Shipping is a vital part of eCommerce stores. So, the development of eCommerce shipping strategies is essential to make your eCommerce business profitable.
Gaurav Jain is a Co-Founder cum Computer Engineer with Extensive Marketing skills who handles all kind of customer Queries and his Happy & Helping nature makes customer’s day Delightful. When he isn’t working, you’ll find Gaurav Reading on Books or Traveling. Also, he is Speaker at Meet Magento India.
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