As a small- or medium-sized business owner with an ecommerce website, it's vital that you have all the cogs in the wheel running smoothly to keep your business agile and your customers happy!
As you focus on building your online brand, packaging, website content, and customer interactions, don’t forget shipping - it's a vital part of your customer’s buying cycle!
As the Government of Canada, Business & Industry, says this about shipping:
|“How you distribute your products and deliver your services can significantly affect your costs and your clients’ satisfaction.”|
Getting your business off the ground is one giant step, but as successful small business owners know, implementing the best tools can make all the difference.
Most small business owners wear all the office hats in the beginning. It’s a steep learning curve to set up bookkeeping, a website, and configure shipping. If you’re new to shipping and using our Freightcom platform we have some tips that will help you save valuable time and reduce courier shipping issues.
For sellers who are spreading their wings to foreign lands, we have some fantastic bonus tips to get your cross-border courier shipping in order! (Yes, some parts of the US can be quite 'foreign' to us.)
Let's dive right in!
1 - Package your products properly
If you are sending important documents or products to a customer, it’s important that your items arrive safely and undamaged. From the moment the package arrives, your customer is judging your brand and the quality of delivery by the courier service. Professional packaging such as boxes, packaging tape and fillers will not only ensure a positive brand experience but will protect contents from handling damage.
2 - Avoid extra charges by having the correct measurements
Shipping rates depend on a number of factors: weight, dimensions (volume), distance, time, quantity, type of product, courier.
When obtaining a shipping quote, it’s essential to put in accurate dimensions and weights so that the billed shipping charge matches the quote you received. To avoid any surprise charges, any dimensions or weight with decimals need to be rounded up to the next whole number; for example, 2.5 should be entered as 3. Couriers will verify your data and adjust your invoice accordingly if the weight and dimensions are incorrect, resulting in extra charges.
3 - Double-check shipping information
We know it sounds obvious, but when sending shipments it’s worthwhile to double-check that you’ve entered the correct information on the shipping label - including the apartment number, suite, postal code, unit number, and/or buzzer number (two things that are often forgotten).
Correctly entering this information will prevent delays and will help your business avoid any address correction charges by the carrier.
4 - Consider insurance
Have you thought about insurance? While accidents don't happen often, they can occur and it’s possible that even the most careful courier could lose your package. The couriers we use offer a basic coverage for up to $100; if the value of your shipment is above that cap, you should consider using Freightcom insurance, which provides coverage for higher amounts. If a shipment does go missing or arrives damaged you can easily file a claim directly on your Freightcom account.
5 - Schedule a pick up for your location
After your product is properly packaged, labelled and insured, it’s time to get it to the courier service. When booking a courier shipment, we recommend you schedule a pickup location and time. This delivery option will notify the driver to come and pick up the shipment from your business so that you don’t have to drop-off your packages. Different couriers have different cut-off times for same-day pickup. For example, shipments booked with Canpar before 12 pm will generally be picked up the same day.
As we promised, here are some bonus tips for SMBs that ship across the border:
Ready to find out more ways you can save time and reduce costs when sending packages with Freightcom?
Opting for Freightcom also gives you access to our eCommerce shipping solution ClickShip, which allows you to automate your shipping process and gives you access to exclusive discounts.
Not a ClickShip customer yet? Get ready to take your eCommerce shipping game to the next level with ClickShip!
Written by Ankur Khurana
Content Writer at Freightcom