Ecommerce Shipping Guide

Just one parcel? Send it HERE

Do you have an online store?

Optimise shipping at no extra cost with our PRO tool

Ecommerce Shipping Context

The eCommerce industry is booming. With so many new online stores popping up every day, more and more people are shopping online. This has created a huge demand for shipping services to get packages from warehouses worldwide to customers’ doorsteps as quickly as possible.

Shipping is one of the most important considerations when it comes to online shopping. It has a huge impact on customer satisfaction and retention rates, as well as sales conversion rates. In order to get your customers’ orders to them in a timely manner, you must have an efficient shipping process in place.

You only need to read the statistics to understand why having shipping best practices in place is the key to a successful online business. Did you know that the main reason for online shoppers abandoning their cart on checkout is due to shipping costs being too much? Or that 75% of consumers will buy more items if there is no fee for delivery?

However, for some, the biggest headache of an eCommerce business is shipping. From managing inventory to ensuring that each and every order gets shipped out, it's a never-ending race against time. But there are strategies for dealing with these logistics hurdles.

Ecommerce Shipping Strategy

It should be understood that there is no one standardised system for an eCommerce shipping strategy. Every business will need to formulate its own procedure. Your shipping strategy will also develop as your business grows. It might be that you expand to international markets, or you need to adapt to your customer's expectations. However, you must start with a strategy to have the foundations in place for growth and fine-tuning.

An eCommerce shipping strategy outlines the logistics for your business' delivery process, which includes choosing shipping carriers to work with, packing and preparing packages in advance, establishing guidelines for package size to determine how much you'll charge to ship each item, and then using a system to track your shipments.

Ecommerce Shipping Solutions

In the UK, eCommerce consumers expect convenience, competitive prices and quick delivery for the items they order online. For eCommerce business's it means that careful thought should go into selecting your shipping carriers. To provide shipping options for as many customers as possible, you should offer a wide range of methods and rates.

Despite the growth of eCommerce, many online retailers struggle to find a shipping partner that can handle all their shipments. This is why we'd like to introduce you to Packlink.

Packlink provides an affordable alternative to traditional eCommerce shipping solutions by offering a fast, easy-to-use platform where small business owners can manage their orders from start to finish in one place at no additional cost. It's totally free, and you have the flexibility of not having to use just one shipping carrier for your deliveries.

You can easily manage your shipments from one central dashboard, so you save time and money on every order. We make it easy for you to ship your products using a variety of carriers. Our platform integrates seamlessly with the major shopping carts like Shopify, Prestashop, Magento etc.

As part of your shipping strategy, you should make the order process as stress-free as possible by providing a way for your customers to track their packages. We offer two options to track your shipments and keep your customers informed either from the Packlink PRO dashboard or the carrier’s site.

Packlink offers a better way to ship your products by combining all the best shipping methods into one simple solution. It's easy to use, affordable, reliable and transparent. We've simplified it, so you don't have to worry about anything except getting customers what they want when they want it.

Shipping Methods for Your eCommerce Business

When it comes to shipping, the more options you have available, the better. The reality is that not every customer will want their purchase shipped the same way, and it's important for your business to be able to accommodate different preferences.

Two Day Shipping

Two-day shipping is a service offered by many retailers that allows you to get your items delivered within the next two business days. The term "2-day" refers to how long it takes for an item to be shipped from the retailer's warehouse and arrive at your doorstep. In today's society, where everything is fast-paced and instant gratification is desired by many consumers, two-day shipping has emerged as an expectation that many customers just can't live without.

It was with the invention of Amazon Prime, a program that offers free two-day shipping on millions of items, the landscape of eCommerce shipping changed, and small to medium-sized had to try to compete with this eCommerce giant. Fortunately, two-day delivery is now an affordable option for any small online business, with many carriers offering this eCommerce shipping solution.

Overnight Delivery

Overnight delivery or next day delivery is a service that offers packages to be delivered on the next business day. The most obvious benefit is that customers can have their items in hand faster than ever before for a small extra charge. Overnight shipping allows online retailers an opportunity to offer customers an added convenience factor by delivering products faster than what would otherwise be possible.

Expedited Delivery

Expedited delivery is a service that provides the customer with priority processing of their shipment to ensure it arrives as quickly as possible. Paying extra allows customers to receive their orders in as little as one business day, depending on where they live and what type of order they have placed. This service has become popular among e-commerce shoppers who need a time-sensitive product and can afford the extra cost.

International Shipping

International shipping is an important part of any eCommerce store because it opens up the opportunity for your business to go global. You can start getting orders from around the world. One of the main reasons international customers have been drawn to online shopping is that they are not limited by geographical borders when it comes to finding what they want and need. International Shipping allows your company's products to get into the hands of people worldwide, which can be a great way for you to add more revenue to your bottom line.

International shipping costs can be expensive and time-consuming, but it doesn't have to be if you use the right shipping solution like Packlink.

Freight Shipping

Freight shipping is typically used for the transport of heavy goods from one location to another. It can also refer to international freight, which entails the shipment of cargo internationally over long distances. The freight industry has been around for centuries and continues to grow as more people shop online, and overseas imports continue to increase.

The freight forwarding process includes assessing your shipment's needs, selecting a carrier that can meet those needs, and finally arranging for pick-up and delivery at each endpoint. It can be done for a single shipment or on a long-term basis with contracts in place to provide regular service.

Ecommerce Shipping Rate Options

There are many different options for shipping, and they all have their own pros and cons. It's important that you know your customer, what they want, and how much they're willing to spend so that you can make the best decision possible when it comes to choosing a shipping option. Of course, you must also ensure that the shipping costs don't leave your business out of profit!

Free Shipping

Offering Free Shipping is one of the most popular marketing strategies in eCommerce today because it’s an affordable way to generate more sales, especially among new customers. Offering a free shipping option not only reduces customer’s anxieties about ordering products online but also helps them feel confident enough with your company to make repeat purchases as well.

Even if you don't have a lot of money to invest in advertising campaigns or other types of promotional activities, free shipping can be used as bait to lure potential customers who are hesitant about buying from an online business they haven't purchased from before.

Ensure that you don't offer free shipping if it will put you out of business - this strategy should only be used when it makes sense for your company and you have calculated your margins. It might make sense to offer free shipping on all orders over £100 or just on specific items, depending on what works best for you and your eCommerce business.

Benefits of free shipping include:

  • Free shipping is a great way to make your customer feel valued
  • It's an incentive for customers to buy more products
  • Free shipping helps you stand out from competitors who may not offer it and compete with those who do
  • The cost of free shipping is often offset by the increase in sales it generates, as the average order value typically increases when there is free shipping available

Consider offering free returns as well - this will help increase customer satisfaction with their purchases and reduce return rates by making them feel more confident about what they're buying from you.

Flat Rate

Flat rate shipping is a form of shipping where the customer pays a predetermined fee per package no matter its size or weight.

The benefits to you as a business are that you know exactly how much it will cost to ship a package and easily calculate what shipping charges are on any given transaction. A disadvantage of flat rate shipping is that the customer typically pays less in fees than they would with other forms of shipping because there aren't additional costs for weight or size.

The benefits to your customer include:

  • The customer has a better understanding of what they're paying for before they make their purchase
  • Flat rates provide uniformity in cost across all sizes and weights
  • Customers can avoid hidden fees
  • It's easier to calculate total costs with a single flat fee
  • It's easy for customers because they know their total upfront, which means no surprises at checkout

For businesses that are shipping heavy or bulky items, flat rate shipping may not be a good choice. You should also take your time determining the right pricing. If the flat rate shipping prices are too high or too low, it could be detrimental to your business and cost you money in the long run. If your shipping price is too high, your customers might abandon the cart and not purchase. If you set the price too low, you could end up losing money.

Live Carrier Rates

Some eCommerce shipping services allow you to integrate real-time carrier rates on checkout. This gives full transparency to your customer and freedom of choice with the exact rates shown based on their location and preferences for delivery. Real-time rates are ideal if you need to offer the best shipping rates but still cover your costs.

Table Rate Shipping

Table rate shipping is another option for United Kingdom eCommerce stores; this is a more complex shipping method. It is based on a set of shipping rules based on considerations such as the size, price, destination or order size of the product being shipped. An example might be that you charge by weight; for instance, anything less than 1KG costs £5 to ship, packages over 1KG and under 5KG cost £10 to ship. You can use an eCommerce platform such as Woocommerce to set up table rates on your website.

In Summary

How you choose to ship can impact the success or failure of your business, so it’s important that you think about how shipping will affect sales and customer experience before making any decisions. When and how you ship your product can significantly affect customer satisfaction, return rates, and sales conversions.

When it comes to eCommerce shipping strategies, the most important thing is to find what works best for your customers. Make sure that you have a clear pricing strategy so that customers know how much they're paying with every purchase. The more transparent and customer-friendly your website is about eCommerce shipping rates, the better chance you'll have of securing the sale.