While many businesses outsource their shipping operations, it can be highly advantageous to do it in-house instead. You will have more control over quality, packaging, speed, and other factors that can cause business shipping operations to succeed or fail. Here are some of the most important factors to consider when deciding to handle your company’s shipping in-house.
Whether you’re sending your products directly to the customer or to a store, shipping costs will be one of the most important things to factor into your plans. Consider the weight of the product, the packaging, and how that cost will affect what your customer pays. Free shipping is valued among customers in today’s market, so find a way to work the cost of shipping into the cost of the product itself. Otherwise, you may inadvertently turn away bargain-seeking consumers from your business.
The packaging you use is critically important because it is what ensures items will arrive to your customers undamaged. When you ship in-house, you have complete quality control over how items are packed and shipped out. Even if your product isn’t fragile in nature, it’s essential that you work with a professional designer to put together a packaging system that will protect your product through extreme conditions. Rain, snow, heat, and sudden impact should all be taken into consideration to ensure that your customers can rely on your product to arrive safely.
Another consideration is what shipping services to use. There are plenty of shipping companies to choose from, including USPS, UPS, FedEx and more. You also need to know and understand the various services offered by these shippers. For example, if you primarily sell items that are considered media, such as books, the United States Post Office offers media mail shipping which is considerably cheaper than other options, especially considering how much printed material can weigh. If you opt for a company that gives overnight shipping, you’ll also want to be sure to consider the benefits vs the costs that it may have on your customers.
Shipping regulations are not always a significant concern, but they can be under the right circumstances. This is especially true when you sell dangerous items or controlled substances, and especially if you sell internationally. If you sell to a foreign market frequently, it is in your best interest to understand any shipping restrictions, taxes, or fees associated with making sales and shipping there. When you buy a shipping container, you’ll likely have to register its code, as well. If you have been asked to ship to somewhere unusual, check regulations before you agree to the sale. Doing so can save you a significant headache later.
There are good reasons to handle your company’s shipping in-house. However, it needs to be done right. Consider the factors outlined above and you should have minimal issues.
Meghan Belnap is a freelance writer who enjoys spending time with her family. She loves being in the outdoors and exploring new opportunities whenever they arise. Meghan finds happiness in researching new topics that help to expand her horizons. You can often find her buried in a good book or out looking for an adventure. You can connect with her on Facebook right here and Twitter right here.