Well, eCommerce is the largest business sector in the world that seeks to stand out to online shoppers by delivering faster and cheaper shipping options. And the main goal and success mantra of any business is also to cater to the needs and preferences of customers and enhance sales. And when it comes to meeting customer’s requirements, many other factors play an important role in enhancing your business.
Gone are the days when customers only used to be satisfied with the product. Nowadays, they want more in form of added services, which means they are more demanding than ever before. With the advent of online shopping and eCommerce, the whole concept of business and logistics has undergone a sea change. However, as a business, it is essential to know that lack of proper shipping can ruin your business prospects.
Well, leading retailer Amazon continues to set the standard for the eCommerce industry with its widely available two-day shipping option and growing same-day shipping option. Yet, customers who demand fast shipping may not realize how increasingly expedited timelines affect small businesses that cannot offer quick shipping affordably.
Meanwhile, shipping fees are now a major conversion roadblock and shoppers abandoned their carts due to expensive shipping fees and left because shipping wasn’t free.
However, the cost of shipping should be free as they are only one component to eye on when crafting your shipping strategy. Customers don’t just want their goods shipped to them free, they want them shipped fast, too.
How You Can Offer Free and Fast Shipping without Losing Money?
Indeed! At the end of the day, the majority of customers still care most about free shipping. And no wonder as a customer or normal people, you have tendency that where you can get things free and fast. However, some customers are willing to pay a premium to get their order shipped faster especially at certain times of the year like on holidays.
Giving customers the choice to upgrade to expedited shipping for a reasonable fee is the best way to meet their needs without emptying your pocket on shipping costs. Many brands are already providing free shipping as well as expedited shipping for a reasonable upcharge. This allows customers to receive the product much quicker.
There’s no better example than Apple as they give you free shipping over purchases of $50. This is not something that is limited to some companies or stores as free shipping is everywhere.
What you can do?
You need to make sure that shipping timelines clear to customers throughout the shopping process. Customers always in a hurry to get their product and see what’s inside. In this time, let them know early on in the funnel about any free shipping offers, but it’s also important to communicate the estimated shipping times throughout the checkout process. This helps avoid any bad surprises once a customer has placed their order.
Again, many stores and brands communicate the estimated timeline for their standard free shipping on their cart page and let you know there will be an option for express shipping on the next page. Fast shipping offers are also another level in your promotional toolbox.
There’s no better day like free shipping day in online shopping holidays, but the ever-changing landscape of online shopping changed that most major retailers now offer some type of free shipping promotion year around.
How You Can Know Whether You Should Run a Fast-Shipping Promotion?
There are some points that need to be discussed before launching a Fast-Shipping promotion. Here we will share some of the key items that you need to eye on before thinking about timeless shipping promotion.
- Relevance is Key: The first and foremost thing that needs to keep in mind is relevancy because your product may be better positioned to see a lift from fast shipping promotions at some times of the year than others. For example, if you sell gifts, you’re more likely to see positive outcomes from free 2-day shipping. You just need to promote before Christmas week.
As sellers, it is your job to show customers all the reasons they should buy. Giving them fast, reliable, and free shipping make sure the product will reach them on time and intact. Let’s check some of the fast-shipping programs you should be on across different marketplaces.
Amazon, the leading retailer in the eCommerce market and also in fast shipping with their Amazon prime service. They pushed for fast and free delivery early on, and the strategy paid off.
Sellers who want to use the service can use fulfillment by Amazon as all you need to do is send your items to one of the Amazon warehouses. The rest they will take care whether it’s packing, shipping, and customer service.
Hence, if you sell on the Amazon Marketplace, then getting on Amazon prime for at least a portion of your products can help you tap into that market. This will help you drive buy-ready customers, and raise conversions to enhance profits.
Even Google Shopping is Google’s marketplace also using the same strategy as Amazon. With no monthly or yearly fees for an easy-to-use mobile app and desktop site, buyers like it. To sell on Google express, you just need to fill Google Express interest form and this is currently available in the USA.
- Pricing is a must: The most commonly asked question is what is the minimum dollar threshold orders need to meet to qualify for free expedited shipping. So, this is depending on your internal costs and margin structure, which will vary by merchant. You can estimate by considering what your shipping costs are, what percent of orders currently go out with expedited shipping, and what your current average order value is.
The same is applied to free shipping to calculate, but take into account the added cost for expedited delivery.
- Timing: Deadline is a must because you need to make sure to understand your shipping carrier’s cut-off deadlines and internal order cut-offs, especially if you’re promising delivery by a certain date. The last thing you want to deal with is irate customers calling when their products haven’t arrived by the appropriate delivery date.
In the end, you need to make sure that performance is good and also the cost of these promotions. Thus, ensure that these promotions are adding some value to your bottom line.
Fast-shipping is crucial for the eCommerce customer experience, given the diversity of devices and customer preferences, it can be challenging to achieve success in the highly competitive field of online retail. As you can see, these are some of the methods you can use to make fast and free shipping for your startup.