If you have an eCommerce store, you know that shipping costs can make or break sales. And while you want to incentivise shipping as part of a great customer experience, how to you get the balance right between pleasing customers and missing out on profit? To help with this tricky question, we asked the team at Shippit for some tips. Shippit integrates with Infinity and is a platform that helps retailers make smarter shipping decisions to save time and money and keep customers happy. Here’s what Shippit’s Jesse Peters had to share:
Consider multiple carriers
Depending on what you’re shipping and where it’s going, different shipping companies offer distinct advantages. While it’s generally the case that shipping companies give better rates based on volume, there may be a faster, cheaper way to send specific items using a different carrier. Remember – the more you ship, the more you save, so always compare rates and negotiate for better rates.
Test different offers
There have been many studies into whether free shipping works, and the answer is a resounding ‘yes’. Not only does free shipping reduce the path to purchase, it’s been proven to build loyalty and reduce cart abandonment. So what’s the best option for you? Find out by testing. Here are a few strategies to consider:
- Blanket free shipping policy: No matter the size of the order, it gets shipped for free.
- Free shipping to members only: Only loyalty or VIP club members get free shipping.
- Minimum order free shipping: When a customer purchases a certain amount of items, those items are shipped for free.
- Free shipping on specific products: Protect your margins by offering free shipping on certain high-value or high-profit products.
- Promotional free shipping: Drive sales during holidays. Having a time-limited offer can help instil a sense of urgency.
When reviewing your strategy, look out for changes in conversion rates, as well as average order value. Compare online sales during free shipping periods to the times when it wasn’t free. Look at cart abandonment rates to see whether free shipping has an effect. While shipping may be free to the customer, it still comes at a cost to your business, so make sure you measure your overall profit to ensure all strategies are working in your favour.
With so much data at your disposal, you have a tremendous opportunity to test and refine campaigns in real time. By testing different offers, incentives and messages, you can be more reactive and proactive about how and when to offer free shipping.
Offer more choice
Give consumers the the option of free shipping on a standard service or the option to pay more for express or faster delivery if they need the goods sooner. There’s enormous value in choice so put that power in your customers’ hands.
Track and use your data
When it comes to keeping an eye on costs, transparency is everything. You need good, accurate reporting so you don’t make assumptions about what’s working and what’s not. You want a shipping platform that lets you see all your shipping analytics in real time, so you know what you’re spending and how your freight choices affect your bottom line. You also want to know how quickly your parcels are being delivered and whether your customers are satisfied. With this information, you can improve customer experience, streamline shipping, and keep your costs under control.
Shippit powers shipping for Australia’s most iconic retailers and provides customers across the nation with a perfect delivery experience. Shippit will be available to select customers in New Zealand from September 2018.