When preparing your e-commerce store and your shopping cart for various shipping options, it’s important to understand how the integration process works. Which options should you use? How can you present them in the checkout area? How can you include handling with the cost of shipping? If it sounds confusing, it really isn’t – at least when you have Fulfilltopia handling the details!
When it comes to e-commerce store fulfillment, most web developers either don’t handle it under their covered services or don’t understand it at all, and most e-commerce owners don’t really know what the best practices are. That’s why having a professional behind it all can help your business immensely.
Let’s take a look at some tips on how to grow your store and keep your customers happy.
Which Customer Shipping Options to Use
Coming up with a strategy for charging your customer is the first step. You can do the following:
- Offer Free Shipping, which is proven to reduce shopping cart abandonment. Just be aware, shipping may be free to the customer, but someone has to pay for that charge. You have a few options to cover those costs: increase product prices, where the customer pays; pay the shipping cost out of your own pocket; or combine both approaches and increase product prices slightly to cover a portion of the shipping. Another option is to offer free shipping when the customer hits a minimum amount, say $75, which offsets the shipping costs and boosts the size of your average order to help subsidize the cost of shipping & handling.
- Charge Real Time Carrier Rates where you can integrate with carriers such as USPS and Fed-Ex, featuring live pricing from a host of carriers. This puts the choice in the customers’ hands so they can shell out the amount of money they want for the service they want, from one-day shipping to five-to-seven-day shipping. You can offer retail rates or your rates based on your account (if you have one).
- Charge a Flat Rate for customer convenience. However, this works best for companies that offer a standard product line of similar size and weight products. Especially if the product and the package shipping weight is less than 16 ounces when shipping United States Postal First Class Mail. Offering a flat rate for shipping also offers them an incentive to order more product(s).
How you present these options is up to you. Successful online retailers are transparent in the way they offer shipping rates and carriers, often times letting the customer know how much shipping will cost at the product page level — even before they hit checkout. For the convenience of your customers, you can highlight the most affordable shipping option first, allowing the customers to change their option according to how fast they want the package. You’ll also want to alert customers to how much more they should spend before hitting the free shipping minimum to spur them on for additional purchases.
If you are using an order fulfillment company, their rates should be cheaper than yours. Leveraging their shipping volume and what you charge your e-commerce customer online could help your handling costs. This ultimately helps you to outsource your order fulfillment to a 3rd party provider and allowing you to focus on growing your business.
At Fulfilltopia, we can help you to identify the best shipping options based on your products and set them up in your shopping cart. We also handle end-to-end-e-commerce store fulfillment, such as:
- Automated Integration with your Shopping Cart, ERP or Order Management System
- Email confirmations to your customers as soon as package ships
- Affordable local and global shipping rates
Learn more about Fulfilltopia’s e-commerce order fulfillment services and get a free estimate.