5 Courier Shipping Tips For Small Business Startups

Are you a new small business owner with an ecommerce website, taking advantage of the growing trend for online retail? Congratulations! Owning a business is exciting and can be highly profitable.

While you focus on building your online brand, with packaging, website content, and customer interactions, don’t forget a vital part of your customer’s buying cycle, shipping!

“How you distribute your products and deliver your services can significantly affect your costs and your clients’ satisfaction.” Government of Canada, Business & Industry

Getting your business off the ground is one giant step, but as successful small business owners know, implementing the best tools can make all the difference for smooth processes and optimization.

Most small business owners wear all the office hats in the beginning. It’s a steep learning curve to set up bookkeeping, a website, and configure shipping. If you’re new to shipping and using our Freightcom platform, we’d like to share a few tips to save you valuable time and reduce courier shipping issues.

 

5 Courier Shipping Tips For Small Business Startups

1 – Package your products properly

If you are sending important documents or products to a consumer, it’s important that your items arrive safely and undamaged. From the moment the package arrives your customer is judging your brand, and the quality of delivery. Professional packaging such as boxes, packaging tape, fillers, will not only ensure a positive brand experience but will protect contents from handling damage.

 

2 – Avoid extra charges by having the correct measurements

As new shippers soon learn, shipping rates depend on a number of factors: weight, dimensions (volume), distance, time, quantity, type of product, courier.

When obtaining a shipping quote, it’s essential to put in accurate dimensions and weights, so that the billed shipping charge matches the quoted pricing you received. To avoid any surprise charges, any dimensions or weight with decimals need to be rounded up to the next whole number; for example, 2.5 should be entered as 3. Couriers will verify your data and adjust your invoice accordingly if the weight and dimensions are incorrect, resulting in extra charges.

 

3 – Double check shipping information

We know it sounds obvious, but when sending shipments it’s worthwhile to double check that you’ve entered the correct information on the shipping label – including the apartment number, suite, postal code, unit number, and/or buzzer number (two things that are commonly forgotten).

Correctly entering this information will prevent any delays in the transit of your package, and will help your business avoid any address correction charges by the carrier.

 

4 – Consider insurance

Have you thought about insurance? While it hopefully doesn’t happen often, accidents can occur and it’s possible that even the most careful courier could lose your package. The couriers we use offer a basic coverage for up to $100, so if the value of your shipment is above that cap you should consider using Freightcom insurance which provides coverage for higher amounts. If a shipment does go missing or arrives damaged you can easily file a claim directly on your Freightcom account.

 

5 – Schedule a pick up for your location

Your product is properly packaged, labelled and insured, so now it’s time to get it in the hands of the courier. When booking a courier shipment we recommend you schedule a pickup location and time. This delivery option will notify the driver to come and pick up the shipment from your business so that you don’t have to drop-off your packages. Different couriers have different cut-off times for same-day pickup. For example, shipments booked with Canpar or Dicom before 12 pm will generally be picked-up the same day.

Ready to find out more ways you can save time and reduce costs when sending packages with Freightcom? Contact the Freightcom team of experts today. We are more than willing to help.

6 Tips and Tricks On How to Get the Best from Your Courier Service

Couriers can be expensive, especially if you are sending something overseas or if you have a large/heavy package. Sending merchandise and other documents regularly can add up to considerable costs for your business.

At FreightCom we believe in giving our customers value for their money. So, here is a handy guide on how you can manage you courier costs without breaking the bank:

1. Be clever about your packing

You’ll be surprised at how much of a difference you can make by packing in the right manner. This is because weight and dimensions have a major bearing on the cost. Keep your parcel as small as possible. Get the right sized box or packet when packing up merchandise. Avoid excessive padding unless it is delicate and the padding cannot be avoided.

Similarly, weight is also an important criteria. Since you cannot compromise on the weight of the merchandise, be clever with your packing. Use lightweight packing options, like bubblewrap. Instead of plastic cartons, use sturdy cardboard. It’s not just lighter, it can actually withstand more damage than plastic. If you use courier services regularly, buy your packing material in bulk. You can get discounts from wholesalers.

2. Give accurate measurements 

Courier services manage their shipments on the basis of the dimensions and weight of the packages. So, be specific in your measurements when placing an order. While this does not apply for small and light packages, large packages should be measured carefully. It could be worthwhile to buy a weighing scale if you use a courier service frequently.

3. Go for pickup services

When calculating courier cost, you have to also factor in cost of taking the package to the courier service. This is why pick-up services make more sense. This is a door-to-door delivery where the package is picked up from home and delivered to the specified address.

4. Get full coverage

Understand that accidents can happen even with the most careful courier service. Courier services usually offer some coverage for lost or damaged items, but this would be capped at a certain limit. For instance, Freightcom carriers cover up to $100 for any damaged or lost items. So, if you are transporting valuable merchandise, it is recommended to insure your package.

5. Time it right

If you are planning a pick-up, try to schedule it in the most efficient manner possible. Every courier service has a cut-off time for pick-ups. Any order after this time may get picked-up, but there would be on guarantees on the same. Orders after the cut-off time are usually picked up the next day. If you need urgent pick-up services after the cut-off time, contact your courier service to see if such facilities are offered.

6. Look for additional costs

Even if you have a proper cost tab, look for any additional charges that may apply. Details like taxes or pick-up services can add to the overall costs. This is especially applicable when you are looking for international shipments. Similarly, expressed deliveries are bound to cost more.