Published on May 28, 2014 Flexible Shipping Strategies for your ecommerce shop
How can you set up the shipping in your online store so that it’s easy and cost-effective for customers, as well as easy for you to manage?
Shipping is an area that can make-it-or-break-it for many online stores. Customers are ever-more concerned about the costs of shipping items to themselves. But as customers shop around, they are also more savvy at identifying online shops who are just putting their shipping costs on top of their product prices and calling them “free shipping”. How can you get the most out of the shipping in your shopping cart website by using Ozcart?
To understand how to get the most out of your shipping pricing, you should first understand how your customers usually buy the product that you’re selling. This means you need to do a survey of other websites similar to your own and look at their shipping policies. As you visit competitor sites, put yourself in the shoes of your customers and ask yourself – would I find this shipping cost too expensive? What alternatives do I have to buying this product from this store? How much would it cost to buy this product in a local shop? Do I understand how I’m being charged?
Once you’ve understood how competitors charge for shipping, you’ll have a good idea about any patterns that have been established for competitors. Ask yourself if there are any opportunities to make things better for customers? What gaps are there in the way that competitors send out products? Is it hard for customers to get items in a hurry without busting their budget? Is competitor shipping too complicated or over-priced?
Against this understanding of competitors and any opportunities to price your shipping differently from competitors, you should consider this against the actual cost to you of sending the items out.
You are then in a position to consider some shipping approaches that you can implement in your shopping cart software website.
Shipping strategies that you can consider
You might sell products and offer delivery just in your local area. Ozcart allows you to restrict products to being shipped in a particular area by tying them to a particular supplier that only ships to a specified location. In Ozcart, locations can be set up to be countries, states, postcodes, or even streets.
Built-in sales reports
If you’re sending smaller items with larger ones, you can use the exact product dimensions of your products with the Australia Post calculator to get more accurate Australia Post shipping estimates.
Make extra weight allowance for packaging
You can make your shipping estimates by letting Ozcart add an additional weight allowance for your packaging and wrapping. This can sometimes make a big difference if your product packaging pushes your parcel into the next weight bracket for your shipping provider.
Charge handling fees
Want to charge extra for postal insurance or handling fees? You can do this on a per shipping method basis in Ozcart.
Use real time Australian providers
You might want your shopping cart to automatically calculate a shipping estimate for your chosen shipping provider and display it on the checkout. Ozcart lets you do this with the real time calculators of a number of Australian shipping providers like Australia Post, E-Go, Fastway Couriers, Smart Send, and Transdirect.
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