If you’re a small business owner, then chances are you’re aware of the major role shipping plays in the success of your business.
Not only do you need to package your products safely, ship them with a reliable carrier, and do so without breaking the bank, but you must also do so efficiently.
Are you overwhelmed yet?
Don’t be. Because today I’m here to share 8 shipping tips for small businesses that will make the process a breeze.
Let’s do this!
8 Shipping Tips for Small Businesses
1. Shipping Rates
Depending on how much you ship each month, you can often negotiate your shipping rates as a small business. And as you might guess, the more you ship, the lower your rates. (Woohoo!)
So reach out to your preferred shipping company (USPS, UPS, FedEx etc.) and see what type of deal you can get. You might be surprised!
2. Print Your Postage At Home
If there’s one thing I hate, it’s wasting time. So needless to say, standing in line at the post office is one of my least favorite things to do.
Fortunately, there are several resources online that let you print your own postage. USPS, Stamps.com, and PayPal, all allow you to purchase and print your shipping at home, in turn, saving you tons of time. Yes, please!
3. Get a Postage Scale
If you’re going to take advantage of online postage, you will likely need a postage scale, which allows you to calculate shipping cost. I use this one, which I like a lot. But if you search on Amazon, there are many different styles from which to choose.
4. Compare Prices
Before buying postage, check out the different online websites that compare shipping prices for you. Sites like iShip.com, InterShipper.com, and ParcelsPackages.com, each take into account the location, size, and weight of the package and then calculate the cheapest shipment option.
5. Shipping Supplies
Most of the major shipping services like USPS, UPS, and FedEx offer free shipping and packaging supplies. If this is not an option for you, however, try ordering your supplies in bulk to save a bit of money. Additionally, choose lightweight packing material, like bubblewrap, to keep the shipping weight down.
6. Use Tracking
Learn from my mistakes…always use tracking. Enough said.
7. Schedule pickups, if possible
I am all about saving time, and one of the best ways to do that as a small business is by scheduling delivery pickups for your shipments. One less drive to the post office? Yes, please!
8. Self Delivery
If you’re a local business and you plan to complete your own deliveries, make sure you choose your truck wisely. Take into consideration your location, the weather, and the varying conditions you’ll face throughout the year.
If you’re a floral delivery business, for example, and it’s the middle of winter, you need to make sure your vehicle and storage area is protected against frost. (Looking for a great place to start? Heat-Line is a company that specializes in freeze protection systems.)
If you sell heat-sensitive electronics, on the other hand, and you’re in Texas in July, you better make sure you have a great cooling system in your truck.
Additionally, if you’re delivering the products yourself, it’s helpful to brand your vehicle(s) as well. Why? Because a professional approach will leave a positive impression with your buyers.
And there you have it, friends! 8 shipping tips for small businesses. What would you add? Let me know below!