Are you informed of the fact that 73% of online consumers expect fast and cheap shipping of their purchase? Yes, it is an essential factor that one as a businessperson should never neglect. Furthermore, for small-scale businesses getting the best shipping rate is not that easy. The task can become more hectic when it comes to shipping your products internationally.
For small-scale businesses, the cost of shipping internationally can be a considerable expense, but there are always some innovative ways to be on the safer side. There is no doubting the fact that shipping charges are one of the most considerable expenses for a business. For the business selling physical products, shipping costs can’t be ignored. The way you ship affects customer satisfaction levels as well as your business’ profit margins visibly.
There is a number of studies that indicates that around 28% of online consumers abandon carts due to unexpected shipping costs. Furthermore, the number of consumers who have abandoned their cards can turn out to be a significant loss for firms concerning revenue. Hence, the firms must keep customers engaged with attractive shipping offers like free shipping. But on the one hand, where free shipping is beneficial for the consumers, on the other hand, it is undoubtedly an imperative task for firms.
To keep up with the consumers, the entrepreneurs are now concentrating on strategies that can reduce the shipping rates and stop the consumers from abandoning the carts! But what is the solution? From where to start?
Well, many queries might come to your mind. But first, you should be aware of the factors that affect the shipping costs. Or we can say the aspects on which the shipping charges must be calculated.
Factor Determining Shipping Costs
1. Package Dimensions
One of the many facts that determine the shipping cost is the dimensions of the product. It is rudiment in knowing how much it will cost you to ship the product internationally. The more the dimensions of the package, the more it will charge you for the shipping. It is not about how much something weighs. Instead, it is about how much space will it take.
As a matter of fact, all the shipping companies always ask for the dimensions and weight to calculate the exact shipping costs. Therefore, it is crucial for you to keep the dimensions to the minimum in order to reduce shipping charges.
2. Origin and Destination of Products
Apart from the dimension of the package, a significant chunk determining the shipping charges depends on the site of the warehouse and the delivery location as well.
It is one of the significant factors, especially for businesses in charge of the entire shipping process and owns an inventory. In this case, the shipping costs are affected by the distance of the delivery area and the warehousing of the products. There are plenty of firms accommodating shipping costs in this scenario by clearly displaying a shipping calculator for the customers at the checkout page. A shipping calculator makes the charges transparent to the consumers, like why they are being charged. It also helps in making the customer realize that the company is not asking for any extra.
3. Package Weight
Another significant criterion deciding the shipping charges for the products you want to ship internationally is the weight. Yes, how much your weight costs also matter here! The significance here refers to the actual weight of the product. It’s about the synergic effect of its packaging.
The heavy packaging leads to higher shipping costs. But the actual weight of the product can help in lowering down the shipping costs to a significant extent. There is several shipping service providers who charge you based on the dimensions and weight of the packaging.
Therefore, it is essential to look out for some solution regarding the packaging of the products. Apart from the packaging, one should also consider adding not needed paddings, sturdy packages, and more, which ultimately adds to the overall weight of the packaging.
4. Delivery Time of Package
What should be the delivery timing of the package? Yes, this is yet another pivotal question, or we can say the factor determining the shipping charges. How fast the products are required to get delivered to the consumer is a significant aspect that one cannot miss.
The urgent items to deliver also have urgent pickups, and therefore it needs active tracking on their status. Due to this, the shipping charges turn out to be directly related to the delivery time. Less the time of delivery means more shipping charges. The overnight shipping charges are comparatively on the higher side. You might have noticed that nowadays companies present a choice in front of customer about the standard or delayed delivery of their purchase. It is just because the companies manage their shipping costs effectively by prioritizing product deliveries.
5. Handling Charges of Package
Have you ever notices special handling charges on the checkout page and wondered what it actually means? Well, it is also a considerable factor determining the shipping costs. Some unavoidable charges are related to the nature of shipping which you’re choosing for your products. For your business, you might have come across these charges such as:
Insurance: It does not matter how authentic courier service you’re choosing; things can turn hectic at any point in time. Therefore, considering this reason, businesses buy insurance for their products/services so that they can claim against lost orders and refunds, etc. But if you are willing to kill two birds with one stone, then you need to act smarter.
If you want to buy insurance as a safety measure and at the same time want to cut down the added shipping costs, always pick the type of insurance that your products need.
Pickup charges: It includes the costs of collecting the products from the shipper’s warehouse.
· Pays whether or not transporter’s carelessness reasons the loss
· Door to door protection
· Paying for the loss happening outside the carrier
· Payment for rushed replacement of products
· Delivery confirmation and tracking costs
In a nutshell, we can say that whatever added benefit you ask for better shipping comes with a particular price tag. Therefore, it is crucial to analyze the various shipping services and also to assimilate the needs of your customer.
Ways to Get Cheap International Shipping Rates
1. Check Offers and Discounts
Tip one is to always look out for discounts! The international shipping companies give discounts, and that is the aptest time to steal the cheapest rates. During the discount season, you can save a lot. Hence, it is always a brilliant idea to keep your eyes wide open to never miss out on any discounts that can save you money.
2. Say No to Gift Boxes
The demerit which you will have to face in case you ask for gift boxes from abroad is the added shipping cost. Yes, this adds up to your shipping. Hence, the better way is to simply buy gift boxes from nearby your locality and save that money.
3. Scheduling Delivery Smartly
A delivery schedule or strategy is crucial if you are running a business and want to ship internationally. Suppose you want to ship multiple packages internationally, so either you can ask the shipping company to send them separately, or you can forward the parcels at the same time. You might be thinking, why you should do this?
Well, in this manner you can save up the cost of storing the parcels. It also adds up to the shipping costs. Furthermore, since it is more expensive to ship via air as compared to the ocean, so, ensure that you schedule the delivery dates that will give you ample time to ship the parcels using the water transport system.
4. Use Software to Outsource Your Shipment
You can make your shipment more streamlined by outsourcing them using the software. There are instances that you might lose control while outsourcing, but the plus point is shipping carriers are increasingly giving more visibility and information. But in case you are shipping via sea, then the chances of this particular trade-off are higher.
With them enhancing outsourcing software today, even if you want to outsource a huge majority of your shipping, there are fewer chances of completing losing control over your shipments.
5. Cross Check DIM Weight
DIM weight can be understood as the amount of space a package inhibits in relation to its exact weight. For every shipment you want to send internationally, you are charged based on Dimensional weight or the exact weight of the parcel. Therefore, it is always crucial to keep in mind that shipping firms charge for the shipment of cargo based on size or weight, depending on what’s more.
6. Pick The Perfect Freight Forwarder
If you want to ship at cheaper rates internationally, then find a forwarder that charges less for the service. From handling the shipping customs to the right international courier services, a freight forwarder will handle all of this for you.
Furthermore, you should always lookout for a professional forwarder. Be careful while dealing with them and ensure that you send the right quotation. If the forwarder is offering less quotation, then there are chances that they may fail to deliver other additional charges like door-to-port delivery. Hence, it is important to work at the right quotation and to work with someone who respects you as a partner!
7. Prefer Electronic Documentation
Most people usually forget about the documentation costs and end up increasing the shipping charges. If you have picked a shipping company, and they will allow your shipping documents, then always go with electronic documentation.
There are many reasons to go with the electronic version such as, it saves time for everyone involved in the process, it cuts down on printing charges because you don’t need to print various copies of a single document. Also, it will be a win-win situation if the company do the documentation process for you!
Tips to Save Money on Packaging
When you start to ship internationally, then cutting the cost must be your first target. Here is one way that can help you to save up the shipping cost. The packaging of the parcels generally includes the charges of outer boxes and cushioning.
Hence, here you can cut down the cost by reducing the packaging expense. You can consider this idea. But it is always good to do some research related to your business to ensure that this idea fits you the best.
1. For non-fragile items, you can use less cushioning for the packaging
2. Always customize the packaging of your parcels
3. Instead of shipping every product separately, try to ship them in one large box
4. Pick out the lightest weighing box or mailer
5. Try sending a mailer instead of a box for the items which are not fragile
6. Always ask your carrier about how you can pack the product for the destination
Therefore, these were some of the tips and tricks that one can try. But obviously, you do not want to break your products while delivering. Hence, you should be careful about their packaging along with saving your shipping charges. You need to experiment to know what suits you the best!
In a nutshell, it will be right to say that finding cheap international shipping rates is, nonetheless, then killing two birds with one stone. On the one hand, you get cheap rates, and on the other hand, you can satisfy your customers. Safe shipping overseas can bring your business big opportunities to grow. Hence you should keep on looking for ways to shop smart.