Shipping as a small business owner can feel intimidating. The pressure of getting packages from your company to your customer—safely, in the midst of a pandemic has many small businesses searching for fast(er) shipping solutions. For the past six years I’ve learned how to make shipping pleasurable for both my team and my customers.
Here are 5 tips to help you simplify your shipping process and retain more customers:
1.Take back your time
If you’re taking your packages to the post office everyday and spending 45-60 minutes waiting for your packages to get scanned—stop today. Instead ask to speak to a postmaster and inform your postmaster that you need to speak with a dedicated USPS specialist who can help you with having your packages picked up as well as ensuring you have a dedicated representative to assist with all your shipping needs. This same method can apply to other shipping carriers you may use.
2.Ensure your customer has package protection
The pandemic has made shipping slower than normal. Although slow(er) shipping timeframes aren't a direct reflection on your business, many customers see you as their point of reference. You’re just more accessible. Route Insurance is a great addition to add to your storefront. The service is free for merchants however customers pay a small fee for peace of mind. Route collects the customers fee from you weekly. If a package is lost or stolen the customer will either be refunded for the cost of their order or Route will replace the package that was lost.
3. Print a Scan Sheet (if available)
Scan sheets are a time saver and they’re free! A scan sheet archives every package you have created for the day and embeds information that helps track your customer’s orders. You could take this scan sheet to USPS, Staples, or anywhere that can receive your package(s) for shipment. Quick Note: Be sure to hold on to your scan sheet until every order attached to the sheet has been successfully delivered.
4. Set a goal
Efficiency matters. Talk to your fulfillment team about how many orders you have, how many orders you expect them to fulfill each hour, what time your mail carrier is expected to arrive to retrieve your orders and what time you expect the scan sheet to be printed with all orders ready to be picked up.
5. Follow Up
Reach out to your customers after a few days and assure them that their package has shipped and set the expectation about when they should expect their package. If you don’t know when they should expect their package, just remind them that we are still in a national pandemic and that they purchased Route Insurance which protects their package if lost or stolen.
Follow these tips and watch your shipping become more manageable.
This article was written in partnership with wiseHer - a technology platform that provides on-demand expert advice for small businesses and women to accelerate their business or career.
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