Few things are more important in the world of ecommerce than the shipping process. You can make or break your reputation with customers by how well you manage to deliver the products that are ordered. If you want to package and ship an item promptly, you need to gather all of the important information about the order before you begin. Keep these five things in mind before releasing a single package to a delivery service.
Some platforms integrate verification to ensure anyone placing an order is using a valid credit card or other payment method. Other shopping cart tools don’t include this service, making it vital that you use some kind of independent verification system. Palmer Web Marketing says that you need to have proof of valid payment before you even start packing an order for delivery. This prevents a lot of fraud, which can quickly eat away your profit margin.
The checkout process is ideal for collecting contact data from shoppers. Saving the email address of your customers can help you build a large email marketing list very quickly. If you don’t send out too many emails and offer enticing discounts, you can easily turn one time visitors into repeat buyers. Shopify recommends adding an opt-out button to let customers keep their information private. Adding someone to an email list without their permission can cause you to be labeled as spam. The same is true of using customer addresses for a direct mail campaign.
Consumers often leave you a few important details when ordering for a delivery. One mistyped number or letter could cause your package to get lost for weeks in the mailing system. CrazyEgg recommends integrating an address verification system into your checkout process. If you are shipping with Fedex, UPS, or the United States Postal Service, you can use their verification system to ensure your delivery will reach the right destination before you even send it.
Underestimating your shipping costs will quickly eat into your ecommerce profit margin. Many items that sell well online already offer a limited profit, making it essential that you charge your customers enough to cover the actual costs. Use a postal scale to weigh your inventory rather than relying on manufacturer information, recommends Palmer Web Marketing. If this is possible for you, it will allow for very accurate shipping quotes. This will prevent you from overestimating costs and potentially alienating your clients.
Customers love tracking numbers. With the right code, everyone can track the shipping process and estimate exactly when their items will arrive. Nearly all of the major domestic and international shipping providers offer some kind of tracking service. This upgrade can often cost less than 30 cents per package, according to FedEx. This minimal investment could provide a lot of security and customer satisfaction throughout the ordering process. You can also offer tracking as an optional upgrade to let customers decide if they really need to know the exact delivery date.
Ted Hosford has worked within the ecommerce market for more than 10 years as a business consultant. He shares his knowledge on various business blogs. Click the link to find shipping label software solutions.