A great way to improve your online business services throughout the holiday season is to use well-thought-out holiday shipping strategies. Your clients could shop elsewhere instead of your store if they need a better delivery experience. You must ensure that your shipping procedures are up to par. Here will be the best practices for eCommerce shipping during the holiday season.
Shipping is one of the most annoying issues for both buyers and sellers during the holiday season. You will need proper strategies for the shipment on these occasions due to the following reasons:
Avoid Shipping Delay
You will especially need good shipping strategies during the holiday season because there will be several reasons make shipping delays happen at any time and harm your business like:
- Weather: Unfavorable weather conditions, such as snow, fog, etc., may cause delivery times to be prolonged.
- Documentation errors: Retailers or customers may provide an incorrect or inadequate address or wrongly complete the order form.
- Failures of equipment: Some equipment failures, such as vehicle problems, may result in delays throughout the shipping process.
- Technology issues: Your orders will likely take longer to be delivered unless you get order information due to a system malfunction.
- Supply chain: Since supply chains for firms have a finite capacity, they may become constrained if there are significantly more orders than usual.
Meed the High Demand on Holiday Season
Holidays are the times of the year when shoppers are most in demand, and eCommerce sales are at their highest. You can take advantage of the season to boost your sales, so you should also have a sound shipping system to deliver all of the items you sell on time.
Reveal the Complexity of the Shipment Process
There is a chance of issues with the shipment process because there are too many orders to deliver due to the high demand during the holiday season. Having a proper strategy with reputable shipping companies that your clients trust will help you to minimize these risks.
Use these eCommerce shipping techniques to manage fulfillment effectively. Without spending a lot on your eCommerce shipping system costs, you can complete orders in a matter of hours.
Have a Clear Shipping Plan
Be sure to secure your holiday shipping plans before the last minute. eCommerce business owners have hundreds of shipping options at their disposal!
Plan for shipping in-house: Internal shipping can be a fantastic option for small eCommerce companies. However, as demand for your products grows, more than just in-house shipping may be required.
Plan for working with a 3PL: Costs rise directly to the number of orders in the holiday. For many eCommerce businesses, outsourcing your shopping to a 3PL company can be a fantastic choice. Working with a reliable 3PL service can save you time and stress during the holidays by ensuring that your customers receive their orders promptly and securely.
Plan for working with an eCommerce shipping solution: During the holidays and all year long, partnering with a shipping firm specializing in helping eCommerce enterprises solve challenges may reduce stress.
Diversify Your Shipping Carrier
Choice possesses the power. While choosing a carrier to ship with over the holiday season can be challenging, the good news is that you have many options. While some retailers prefer to use a single carrier to benefit from volume discounts, this shipping approach has drawbacks.
- Uncontrolled issues: If there are problems with the carrier, your packages may be delayed, sometimes indefinitely.
- Complicated prices: Since each carrier determines shipping costs differently, you can't be sure if you're getting the best deal.
- Different services: Some companies might provide day-definite next-day shipment, while others might not. Customers could be more inclined to spend more for faster shipment over the holidays.
Having a varied carrier mix, you may ensure you're giving your consumers the best deals while providing their items exactly when they need them. They will eventually feel more at ease, increasing their likelihood of purchasing from you.
Create Visible Holiday Shipping Policies
Making a comprehensive holiday shipping policy is the first step in putting your customers and team on the same page regarding shipping expectations. You should take the following sections into consideration:
- Possible fulfillment delays: The volume of orders that must be packaged and shipped during the holidays can become overwhelming. You should mention potential shipping delays during the holiday season or give an anticipated completion date in your shipping policy.
- Shipping deadlines: When customers can receive their gifts is one of their top priorities. To ensure that customers place their orders in time to receive their products, you should include those dates in your policies.
After having shipping policies, make sure your policies are visible to customers before they place an order. To ensure it, put them towards the top of your product pages. Your policies can also be found on your eCommerce store's homepage, FAQ page, and Contact Us page, among other places.
Offer more Methods for Your Holiday Shipping
Cart abandonment is decreased, and conversions are increased by quick and inexpensive shipping options. Recent techniques that have gained popularity are:
2-day delivery: Online shopping has come to be associated with this eCommerce shipping option. Although there will be a significant investment in this shipment, it would be simple to keep consumers with it. There are different ways you might use your budget to provide this technique.
Same-day shipping: Delivering purchases quickly on the same day enhances the perception of your business. Organizations that provide speedy services like third-party fulfillment are the only viable choice.
Direct-to-consumer (DTC) delivery: At present, retailers heavily rely on DTC shipping techniques. Instead of selling products through third-party vendors in DTC, you sell and ship directly to your customers. This strategy raises brand awareness among your target markets.
Click and collect shipping: Curbside pickup and BOPIS are advantages of businesses' omnichannel processes, according to click and order shipping. By allowing customers to place items online and pick them up in-store, retailers avoid eCommerce shipping delays.
International shipping: During the holiday season, international customers may only use your eCommerce site to send gifts to their loved ones. Make sure you can effectively fill their orders in other nations. Learn about the tax and customs regulations and the shipping costs in the destination country.
Maximize Your Inventory to Deal with Order Spur
Before the season starts, stock your warehouse completely. You can handle an order rush by keeping your warehouse well-stocked. With the help of this eCommerce shipping strategy, you can finish the majority of orders and please your customers. During the busiest time of year, your eCommerce shipping system may operate without any problems.
However, preparing your warehouse for the holiday season may alter your regular working hours or add to your workload. Even your office employees can work in your warehouses. Running out of storage space in your warehouse is another potential scenario. As a result, setting up your warehouse takes time.
Pay Attention to Order Returns
No one wants to consider returns, yet everyone knows they will occur. Holiday return policies must be simple for eCommerce companies. Here are 3 illustrations:
30-day return policy: Many eCommerce merchants have typical 30-day return periods. The issue with this is that it can result in some presents missing their return over the holiday season.
Mid-January returns: Giving your customers the option to return their orders by mid-January when they place their orders between mid-November and mid-December is a well-liked holiday shipping option.
Self-service returns: By allowing your customers to return items without getting in touch with you, you can lessen the burden during the busy holiday season for eCommerce.
Integrate Powerful Shipping Solutions
Your workload would be reduced if you outsourced your shipping services. Your shipping prices, packaging, returns and replacements, and shipment methods are handled by shipping solutions.
By integrating with robust shipping solutions, your eCommerce shipping system can use a variety of ways to deliver orders locally and abroad. Additionally, they will guarantee that the correct individual receives the orders. They also eliminate the potential for orders to be misplaced, stolen, or delivered to the wrong location. As a result, efficient shipping solutions can increase your profits.
Use Order Tracking to Engage Customers
The majority of people's holiday spending is on gifts for other people. The fact that customers are currently most eager to spend money is something you want to take advantage of. Using an order tracking feature for managing and advertising is one way to benefit from holiday spending. Customers will check order tracking pages more frequently during the holidays to see if their gifts will arrive in time.
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Additionally, you can use order tracking pages to re-engage customers by
- Sharing your return/refund policy.
- Including a reply-to email.
- Including how-to videos for products.
- Linking to your social media accounts.
DSers, a dropshipping tool, has many features that can boost your shipping effectiveness during the holiday season. Some of these features can be listed as Auto update order status, Customize shipping settings,…
Even if you took all the necessary precautions, your orders might still be delayed. Here are some recommendations for how you should respond when your customers' orders are delayed:
Keep their relations: It is preferable if you let your clients know about the problem and provide an explanation for the delay. You can call them or send a detailed message to let them know when to expect the package.
Offer free shipping option: By providing free shipping during holidays, you can lower your customers' expectations. However, it is preferable to make an effort to please your customers by sending the products as soon as possible.
Offer gift cards and discounts: If your customers' orders take longer than expected, you can offer them gift cards, special offers, discounts, etc. As a result, you may decrease their dissatisfaction and increase the likelihood that they will shop at your store again.
Since eCommerce sales increase over the holidays, you may need to ship many times as many orders as usual. Delays in eCommerce shipping should be avoided if you want to retain your present clients.
Listed above are the best practices for eCommerce shipping during the holiday season to provide the best purchasing experience possible. Discover more business ideas on DSers Blog.