Tuesday, April 29, 2008

The way you handle shipping charges will cost you sales!

There is a good chance that you will lose sales today because the carrier's fuel surcharges are making your product too expensive to buy.

Carrier prices are increasing and fuel surcharges are rising. There is a strategy that allows you to thrive in this period of expensive fuel, not just survive. It's a different approach of how to charge your customers for shipping, and includes monitoring shipping for both package weight and shipping charges. Analyze your actual shipping for these factors and you can start winning this battle against these rising prices.

The Ground shipping surcharge is based on U.S. Department of Energy Highway Diesel Fuel Prices and the Air surcharge is based on the U.S. Gulf Coast (USGC) Jet Fuel Price. Both seem to go higher every day. In the last week, a co-worker reported they did not complete 2 different on-line orders because of the shipping charges. One site charged $7.95 for each product ordered. And these were light, small products. To win, you have to successfully combat cart abandonment at order time.

After accurate weight and cost statistics, carrier choice can make a difference, depending on the distance involved and whether you are shipping to a commercial or residential address. Fuel surcharges must be part of the cost statistics or you will not be accounting for 7% to 25% of the total shipping costs. Also, carrier supplied shipping supplies, like free shipping boxes, can also work in your favor. It's important to gain every advantage you can.

Most companies don’t know there is a better way to handle this. Don’t let sales disappear because you are using old software technology. It’s not your fault that the technology in many systems has not kept up with today's challenges and grown old. There is more free information on dealing with shipping costs found at http://www.businessshipper.com/. The time to change is now, don’t wait.