Complete Ecommerce Shipping Solution Guide: Its Costs, Returns, Packaging, Carriers, & More

Complete Ecommerce Shipping Solution Guide

An ecommerce shipping solution is a key to your online store’s success.

Along with thorough market research and perfect advertising your brand online, it is also essential to focus on shipping. 

In recent years, we’ve noticed a massive increase in eCommerce sales. This isn’t just because of the pandemic that the consumers depend on online buying more than before; there are various reasons. Before the pandemic crippled the world, people would buy what they wanted. The market came up with new facilities to cater for the need of people stuck in lockdowns.

Online shopping came along with the convenience of digital transactions and a wide range of selections. Naturally, people were attracted to the better of the two. There is no doubt that the global pandemic has resulted in one of the most significant changes in global commerce.

It has become more convenient for people to order things from the comfort of their own homes and have them delivered to their front doors. That is why developing a clear shipping strategy in eCommerce is critical. We’ve put up a quick guide to everything you’ll need to know to make the best selection for your company because the world of shipping and fulfilment can be confusing to those inexperienced with it.

Learn more about What is an eCommerce Business and How does it Works

Five reasons why people shop online?

Five reasons why people shop online?

A Wide Range of Products

Stock in physical stores is limited, and they only keep the items that are popular and sell mainly. There are a variety of factors that influence the availability of other products. In addition, the local merchant seeks to market their limited inventory.

On the other hand, online shopping displays a wide range of products from multiple businesses. 70% of shoppers shop online because they can choose and explore more according to their needs and trends. You can even purchase second-hand products through online shopping.

The Benefits of Not Having to Go to Stores

Shopping on the internet is straightforward. You don’t have to get dressed and go to the local market, and you go to a lot of stores to find the thing you want. When you shop online, you can do so from anywhere and at any time. You don’t have to be concerned about the working hours of the store anymore. And you can, of course, shop from the comfort of your home and also avail the accessible shipping facility. 

There is no sales pressure when you shop online

When you go to a physical store, the salespeople persuade you to buy more things. Internet buying aims to relieve the customer of this stress and simplify shopping.

No Crowd

Who likes crowds? Shopping becomes a problematic effort in a busy place. During busy hours, car parking may become a challenge. This drives people to turn toward online shopping, and it helps avoid crowds and find the best deals without much hassle. 

Easy Replacement and refund of products 

Product replacement and refunds are simple and require no additional charges or effort. A product that does not match your size or material quality expectations may need to be replaced. Online purchasing products come with a replacement warranty for a short time, for example- 15 days return policy offered by Amazon. You can order your product, and if you are not satisfied with it, you can easily replace it within the 15 days return window without any hassle. 

What are the different types of eCommerce shipping solutions?

What are the different types of eCommerce shipping solutions?

Your shipping option will be determined by several things, including your goods, target audience, and budget. Finally, clients desire agility, which should be the primary motivator in the shipping method you use whenever possible.

The delivery times for each shipping method vary, but a crucial element is when the consumer places the initial purchase.

Expedited delivery

Expedited shipping refers to any shipment technique that is faster than regular. It ensures that things are delivered faster than they would be with traditional shipping methods. Products may transfer from warehouse to warehouse or another checkpoint in conventional delivery. In most circumstances, expedited shipments go from pickup to delivery.

Expedited delivery means that the shipment is picked up from the closest inventory to the customer’s delivery address and delivered quickly. Expedited shipment is more expensive than standard delivery. (For example, Amazon Prime)

2-day shipping

Amazon prime, the eCommerce powerhouse, popularised the concept of 2-day shipping, which other competitors quickly replicated. You place an order, and your product is shipped from the warehouse and reaches you within two days. Works like wonder for anything, be it a tiny sewing needle or a complete couch from another state; the 2-day delivery option keeps everything sorted.

Same-day shipping

Same-day shipping is a delivery technique in which things are delivered the same day or within 24 hours of the client placing the order. Grocery and medicines ecommerce provides services with this shipping facility, and Amazon provides same-day shipping facilities for their prime users on select products.

Overnight shipping

When customers choose overnight shipping, they expect their package to arrive the next business day. “Next-day shipment” or “one-day shipping” are terms used to describe this type of delivery.

There is a specific time range within which one must submit an order to have items delivered overnight. It is only at that point that it is eligible for next-day delivery. The goods are then sorted and picked out of inventory based on the order, packed, and loaded onto the carrier. The courier partner then picked up the shipment and delivered it to the customer’s address the next day.

The cutoff time for placing an order is often between 6 and 7 p.m. in most cases. Furthermore, eCommerce such as Amazon has its own logistics system, ensuring that shipments are rapidly packed and placed onto the carrier for delivery.

International Shipping

International shipping refers to delivering a product from one country to another. eCommerce shipping internationally works like a wonder to connect the world! International shipping has been gaining in popularity over the years because it allows sellers to diversify their businesses.

International shipping businesses can usually assist you in navigating the complexities of international shipping, allowing you to expand your business more efficiently. This allows you to reach out to more clients and grow your business internationally. Also, shipping globally is a terrific method to improve your brand’s awareness and presence and reach more individuals.

Freight shipping

The shipment of heavy commodities by air, land, or water is called freight shipping. Freight shipping is typically designated for things that exceed a specific size and weight limit and bulk items. Any shipment over 65KG. is considered freight.

Eco-friendly Shipping

For packaging and delivering items, eco-friendly shipping includes the use of biodegradable materials that can be easily recycled, reused, and require less time to degrade.

It can also apply to combining orders into single shipments, adopting low-emitting modes of transportation, and other strategies for reducing the environmental impact of package delivery.

Omnichannel Shipping

To deliver a smooth shopping experience, omnichannel shipping is one-touch integration between operations and physical product flows across all channels.

To put it another way, omnichannel shipping is a system that allows customers to complete purchases and get products through any channel they choose.

Ecommerce shipping costs and rates

Size, distance, and other characteristics can influence how much it costs for a product to arrive at a specific location.

Determine your product’s dimensions and weight

The amount of space or density that your product occupies has a big impact on transportation costs since it determines how much room or weight a box takes up in a truck or how much weight it adds to an aeroplane, for example.

The DIM (Dimensional Weight) technique of estimating transportation costs is a pricing method. It’s calculated by multiplying the L x W x H (length, width, and height) of the package by a specific rate (generally 5000). The actual weight of the box may also be a factor.

Both volumetric and physical weight are compared, and the higher of the two is used as the product weight.

Consider the final destination

Size and weight are important, but it’s also important to consider where you’re sending from and where you’re shipping to. According to a general rule of thumb, the longer the box must go, the more expensive it will be.

For example, a consumer in San Francisco will pay a different delivery rate than a customer in China at an eCommerce company situated in Dallas, Texas. This is simply because China is further distant, necessitating the use of an aircraft or a ship to get there, all of which incurs additional costs for fuel, the vehicles used, and the handling charges associated with shifting the item from one vehicle to another at docks or airports.

Costs of shipping carriers should be added.

While the shipping cost is affected by package dimensions and the customer’s destination, not all shipping providers charge the same amount.

Company A, for example, may charge $14.40 to collect and deliver a package from Dallas, Texas, to China. On the other hand, Company B may charge $15.90 for the same shipment. It’s worth noting, though, that in some circumstances, such as domestic or local shipment, company B may be a better deal than company A.

Handling fees

Workers in the warehouse move goods around, generate mailing labels and do other tasks associated with a fulfilment centre. A handling fee is the cost of all of these additional stages.

Handling fees, as indicated above, can contribute to the cost of shipping since your shipment is processed at a warehouse, dock, airport, or other similar location.

The charges of handling and administration will be incurred. As a general rule, the greater the distance between the eCommerce company and the consumer, the more likely the shipment will be handled by many people, increasing the shipping charge.

Customers are charged for shipping in various ways by different eCommerce retailers. Here are two commonly used eCommerce shipping rates.

Flat rate shipping

Flat rate shipping refers to charging the same fixed shipping fee for all orders or shipments that fall into a specific weight range, order value, or other categories. The blended average shipping and handling cost across orders in a category should calculate flat rate shipping.

However, some drawbacks businesses face while using flat rate shipping: sometimes some orders’ shipping costs will not be fully covered, while others will be overcharged in contrast.

Real-time carrier rates

At checkout, some eCommerce stores show real-time carrier rates. The exact shipping charges are immediately obtained through automation, from the carriers based on the customer’s location and delivery preferences.

This enables you to bill clients for the precise amount it costs your company to ship their order. This is a feature available in Shopify’s Advanced plan and shipping APIs.

Offering free shipping

Free shipping can help you reduce shopping cart abandonment, boost conversions, and promote customer loyalty. You can offer free shipping while still making a profit in a couple of ways:

  • Incorporating the cost of shipping into the product price
  • Shipping at later dates to get cheaper courier service

In exchange for free shipping, a minimum spend is required.

Accepting a recurring cost as part of a loyalty program in exchange for free shipping on all purchases (e.g., Amazon Prime)

Ecommerce packaging

Good eCommerce packaging is essential. Rather than wrapping the goods, putting them in a box, and delivering them, many e-commerce businesses are increasingly investing in corrugated boxes to improve packing and labelling. The fundamental goal of better packaging and labelling is to ensure safe product delivery and successful brand promotion. 

Additionally, investing in packing materials and labelling improves the company’s reputation significantly. The customer is satisfied when the delivered product is in excellent condition, and this increases the likelihood of the consumer placing additional orders, resulting in higher ROI and business growth. 

Proper packing can drastically reduce a company’s costs. Good packaging guarantees that the product is not damaged during shipment, reducing the likelihood of customers returning it.

Packaging is essential for establishing a link between a company and its customers. If your product is well-packaged, it will make a lasting impression on the customer long after the sale.

Proper packaging aids in giving clients a positive first impression of your product. If a consumer receives a well-packaged product, their view of your company will be positive. Proper packaging also aids in the development of a strong brand identity.

Ecommerce shipping carriers

There are dozens of options to choose from when it comes to carrier services. Shippers require access to an extensive carrier services network to achieve their customers’ delivery expectations, particularly in high-volume international distribution. Businesses can benefit from the most significant features of each carrier’s services.

All carrier options are at the retailers’ fingertips with e-commerce shipping solutions. Advanced platforms, like Amazon, enable users to compare carriers and services in real-time and choose the carrier and service best suited for each shipment based on the retailer’s business guidelines. Retailers can accomplish their delivery objectives at the lowest cost for each shipment by doing so.

While any shipper’s ultimate goal is to deliver products to customers on time, without damage, at the lowest possible cost, and in the most efficient manner possible, the recent surge in e-commerce has increased customers’ ability to customise their shipping options, and businesses must be able to accommodate this personalisation.

E-commerce shipping solutions allow a business to fulfil a customer’s shipping needs within their system. With the help of AI, retailers can choose carrier partners according to their business rules. According to the retailer’s business rules, they can choose the one that can offer the best rates to a specific region. And also ensure that each shipment is labelled and communicated by each carrier’s labelling and communication standards, as well as any applicable trade regulations.

Transform your eCommerce shipping solutions with iThink Logistics

Shipping is unquestionably a complex element of any eCommerce operation. Every company will face its own set of obstacles that must be addressed and conquered to build the best and most effective shipping strategy. It will take time and implementation to figure out what works best, just like so many other parts of your new eCommerce site.

Shipping is unquestionably a barrier for eCommerce merchants. And, given the nature of your firm, these issues are sure to be unique. To overcome these obstacles, you’ll need to put in a lot of effort by implementing new procedures and keeping track of what’s working for your company.

As with many elements of your business, it will take time to construct, modify, and work your way to customer satisfaction through delivery. 

iThink Logistics is a game-changer for your business and can simplify the entire process of shipping for you! We have extensive expertise in shipping technologies and have immense experience to help your business reach the stars in a jiffy. 

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