Fast shipping is one of the most important factors that affect the buying decision of online shoppers around the world. According to the Bizrate Insights survey, 68% of consumers said fast shipping would persuade them to place an online order.
Ecommerce businesses must find the right balance between speed and affordability to create an exceptional shipping experience that suits their customers.
Although optimising ecommerce shipping may sound easier in theory than in reality, ecommerce businesses can stick to strategic plans that fulfil their shipping expectations without burning a hole in their pockets.
In this blog, we’ll discuss what is ecommerce shipping, what are the essential factors that affect ecommerce shipping, what is the process for shipping an order, and how can Eshopbox help you with ecommerce shipping.
Ecommerce shipping refers to all the services that are required for transporting online orders from a storage facility used by the ecommerce seller (warehouse or a fulfilment centre) to the customer's delivery location.
1. Customer expectations from shopping experience especially ecommerce shipping
While creating a shipping strategy that best suits your ecommerce business, you must consider the customer expectations—in this case, fast and free shipping is the absolute favourite of customers. So, if you want to make your shipping options appealing to your customers, there are 10 ways to offer free shipping to your customers while covering its cost.
Moreover, you can opt for expedited shipping services so that your orders reach your customers faster than ever. However, it’s important to compare shipping carriers and their shipping services and then decide which options will suit your business best.
2. Customer locations
When you’re running an ecommerce business, your customers can be located anywhere across India. So, if you have one warehouse, offering fast shipping across India will be very costly. However, if you have multiple warehouse locations covering all the zones, i.e. North, East, West and South—you can reduce shipping costs significantly while providing express shipping.
3. Measurements and weight of shipments
The size and weight of your online orders is an important aspect—as all major shipping carriers use a pricing technique to calculate shipping costs, i.e. volumetric weight. It considers the size of a package to determine the shipping cost. Thus, you need to weigh and measure your products in order to get a brief idea of the shipping cost.
Most shipping carriers (like Delhivery, Bluedart, and Ecomexpress) calculate shipping rates based on the dead weight (the actual weight of your shipment) of the package or its volumetric weight, whichever is greater. This means shipping larger packages attracts higher shipping costs.
Moreover, it’s crucial to choose packaging that fits just right, so you don’t get overcharged for shipping products in a larger box. You can also use envelopes and poly mailers to reduce package weight and shipping costs.
4. Shipping rates by courier companies
Courier companies give you a correct estimate for shipping rates based on shipment weight, package dimensions, shipping preference (e.g. standard mode or express mode), and origin and destination details. You can get quotes from multiple courier companies and compare them to choose the best service at a reasonable price. Moreover, it’s best to consider your profit margins so that you can cover the shipping cost and make a profit.
5. Shipping insurance
Customer orders can sometimes get lost or damaged in transit. In such scenarios of shipping exceptions, you can minimise their impact with shipping insurance. It is the coverage for customer orders shipped via a courier company to recover any losses. This means you must consider and include the cost of insurance in the total shipping cost.
6. Unboxing experience
If your ecommerce brand values the unboxing experience, adding more packaging into the mix (e.g., a marketing insert, custom note, or using a custom branded box) may be part of your process to ship an order out. You can even consider eco-friendly packaging to showcase that your brand is conscious of the environment. This means you need to consider the level of custom packaging and its cost while shipping an order.
Let’s take a look at the different steps involved in shipping an order:
Step 1: Choose the right shipping plan for the right products
The first step involves gathering all the essential information of your products as shipping different types of products have different rules in place. For example, how you pack and ship F&B (Food and Beverages) products will be different from packing and shipping apparel. Moreover, shipping hand sanitisers and batteries will be considered hazardous materials while shipping and you may need licence and certifications if you’re manufacturing and selling vitamins and supplements.
Step 2: Use the appropriate supplies and packaging
Depending on the type of products you’re shipping, you’ll need to find the right packaging for them. This step involves two crucial considerations on keeping your products safe in transit and creating an exceptional unboxing experience for your customers—avoiding any packaging mistakes.
Step 3: Determine which shipping service you want to use
After comparing the quotes from multiple courier companies, you need to decide which shipping service offers the best shipping speed keeping affordability in mind.
Step 4: Generate or print your shipping label
Once you’ve opted for the right service for shipping orders, you can generate a shipping label. If you’re fulfilling orders yourself from home, you’ll likely need a label printer, ink, and paper. Otherwise, you can have a carrier or 3PL provider like Eshopbox do this for you.
Step 5: Hand over the shipment
After your order is ready, the next step of the shipping and handling process is handing it over to the shipping carrier, who will transport it to your customer.
As you can see, ecommerce shipping isn’t always straightforward for online businesses. There are many complicated nuances and considerations involved, which can be overwhelming and time-consuming. That’s why you should consider letting a 3PL provider like Eshopbox store your inventory, ship your orders and manage your end to end ecommerce fulfilment, from storing inventory across multiple warehouses pan India to getting your orders shipped efficiently.
By handling your entire shipping operation for you, Eshopbox relieves you of the time-consuming and complicated task of figuring out how to ship your orders efficiently. Here’s how Eshopbox helps:
Eshopbox simplifies ecommerce shipping for businesses of all sizes by automating the shipping process. Here’s how Eshopbox helps:
With Eshopbox's strong shipping network, you can take advantage of efficient and cost-effective shipping for your business. Here’s how Eshopbox helps:
The most critical step of ecommerce shipping is making sure that your customers don’t receive damaged products. That’s why Eshopbox takes every precaution to safeguard your customer orders in transit against any damage.
For ecommerce businesses that want to minimise their environmental impact, Eshopbox is the go-to 3PL to achieve carbon-neutral shipping.
Ecommerce shipping is a vital process that has the potential to strengthen your ties with your customers. It helps you improve conversion rates, drive repeat purchases, and build brand loyalty. To fully leverage this robust process, you need to focus on providing seamless shipping so that your customers receive their online orders fast while ensuring efficient and cost-effective shipping. By implementing the above strategies, you can achieve tremendous success while winning on the customer experience and keeping your profit margins intact!