The formula for a good shipping experience is Speed, visibility, accuracy, and affordability.
Despite the fact that many internet businesses concentrate most of their attention on attracting consumers, the after-purchase experience is just as essential. More than half of retailers, on the other hand, state shipping to be a major issue when it comes to logistics operations.
Fortunately, there are several methods to improve your shipping strategy in order to provide a better shipping experience for your consumers.
You’ll discover the significance of creating a positive shipping encounter in this post, as well as how to improve your fulfillment approach to match client demands.
Consumer expectations on the shipping experience
Fast, inexpensive delivery has long been the norm on online marketplaces like Amazon and Walmart. On-demand logistics is more critical than ever before, especially for direct-to-consumer (DTC) firms that must meet strict expectations for fast delivery on all purchases.
Customers have a certain standard of quality when it comes to delivery. The following are the facts:
- 83% of online shoppers expect regular communication about their orders.
- 43% of shoppers abandon their carts due to high shipping costs.
- 73% of online shoppers say free shipping is the most important factor at checkout.
Fast-growing companies that are important to consumers’ purchasing decisions often utilize shipping as part of their marketing approach to attract new buyers and convert them into devoted customers.
You can significantly minimize cart abandonment and encourage brand devotion by providing a variety of shipping options and incentives, such as 2-day delivery or free delivery.
Why creating a memorable shipping experience is important
Both sales conversion and client retention are influenced by the shipping experience. Customers will be hesitant to buy from you again if they are dissatisfied with your delivery alternatives and pricing, as well as final delivery.
Here are additional reasons why creating a memorable shipping experience is critical for company development.
Cultivate lasting customer relationships
Customers are more likely to buy from a company again if they have a positive shipping experience. The shipping and delivery process is also the only real opportunity for most ecommerce firms to meet customers in person. Every stage, from ordering to packing items to delivering them, has an impact on the shipping procedure.
Maintaining a good shipping experience is critical for establishing trust and remaining competitive.
Increase conversion rates
The shipping process begins on your website, with your messaging and the different shipping choices accessible when customers get to the final step of checkout.
Many companies use appealing shipping options as a marketing tool to increase purchase rates, so providing fast and low-cost delivery may have an impact.
Adding a sitewide advertisement at the top of your website, above the navigation, is an effective technique for raising awareness around free shipping.
Customers are frequently happy to spend more money to qualify for free delivery if their purchase meets a minimum cart requirement. Other tactics to boost conversion rates include faster shipping options and leveraging proximity commerce. And by keeping inventory closer onsite, you may provide affordable 2-day shipping via ground.
Learn more about how free shipping incentives may alter buyer behaviors.
10 ways to improve the ecommerce shipping experience
Here are ten ways to make customers happier and more likely to purchase from you again.
1. Offer multiple shipping options
Some businesses just provide one shipping method for items. If this option isn’t suitable for the customer (for example, if they are in a hurry and need a product like yours quickly), they may be dissatisfied (e.g., when they’re in a bind and want your stuff fast).
It’s a usual best practice to give consumers several shipping alternatives, such as 2-day delivery and expedited shipping, overnight shipping, and same-day delivery.
For small ecommerce companies, providing a variety of shipping alternatives might appear unattainable. However, for enterprises of all sizes, there are several logistics options available to provide a range of shipping alternatives — including worldwide delivery.
Launch Fulfillment, for example, is a 3PL that utilizes the same best-in-class technology to power its entire distribution network.
You can split inventory between locations using Launch Fulfillment according to where your clients are located. As a result, when purchases are made on your internet store, it is sent to the closest fulfillment center location. Without paying an arm and leg for it, a client may get 2-day delivery if they are in a low shipping zone (or the same zone as the fulfillment center).
Launch Fulfillment also works with major worldwide and local parcel carriers, allowing merchants to take advantage of a wider range of shipping alternatives and lowering their delivery costs and transit times.
Always be prepared to give affordable alternatives, such as ground delivery, if cost comes first.
2. Stick to shipping times (don’t be late)
Communication is just as important in any good relationship. Make sure that orders are delivered within the same timeframes as your shipping policy states. Be completely open about anticipated shipment dates, whether or not there are delays.
Last-mile delivery delays are crucial to notify your clients right away, because if they’re significant, it’s incredibly difficult for new deliveries to reach them. While most transit delays are beyond your control, timely updates will be appreciated by your consumers.
3. Provide shipping tracking updates
Ecommerce order tracking is a major concern. Customers want to be able to access information quickly and readily. You’ll need to establish a method for sending tracking data automatically to your customers when an order is delivered.
When you automate shipment tracking notifications, you may save time by cutting down on client inquiries about order status. This frees up your ecommerce customer care staff’s attention to more critical tasks.
Using delivery tracking with your clients makes your relationship stronger. It demonstrates that you’re committed to being open and honest with them, which aids in the development of trust.
4. Deliver accurate orders
Opening a box with the incorrect goods may ruin the unboxing experience, regardless of whether it arrives on time. To minimize order packing mistakes, make sure you have adequate order fulfillment procedures in place.
There are things you can do to increase order accuracy, such as using real-time inventory tracking to verify that you have the items ordered on hand, or looking for solutions to reduce your warehouse space and make the picking and packing process easier.
If you currently fulfill orders in-house, but are having trouble keeping up with demand, maintaining a high order accuracy rate will get more difficult. Though achieving a 100 percent accuracy is impossible, you should aim for an accuracy rate of 96% to 98%.
If your current fulfillment and delivery rate is less than 95%, it’s time to outsource it to a third-party logistics (3PL) provider like Launch Fulfillment.
5. Work on flexible return policies
Returns are unavoidable, and they rarely indicate that a client is delighted. You may consider returns as an opportunity to improve the customer experience, though.
Always include clear instructions for customers on how to start a return and send purchases back without any additional headaches in your ecommerce return policy. It’s also critical to be upfront and honest about what to anticipate, including return costs (if any), replacement goods, store credits, and delivery times once items are returned.
There are several methods to enhance your returns management procedure in order to create a customer-friendly return policy, so clients feel more at ease buying from you again. In fact, 92 percent of customers who are pleased with the return procedure will continue shopping with you.
6. Make the shipping process personalized
Why not tailor communications with your consumers to enhance your customer relationships after they’ve made a purchase?
You may customize the shipping procedure by putting more effort into your transactional emails, including amusing messaging and design. For example, you may include eye-catching animation and/or discounts to entice consumers to return sooner rather than later.
It’s a great idea to play around with emails such as order confirmation, shipping information, and order changes. Just make sure that the subject lines are simple so that customers don’t miss them. You may also include gift notes, marketing inserts, and provide incentives or pleasant surprises for your consumers by adding these elements.
7. Consider shipping subscriptions
Subscription fulfillment through an automated recurring refill allows consumers to have orders automatically replenished on a set, regular basis.
Customers may use subscription box services to have food ingredients delivered to prepare a new dish, refresh their wardrobe without rummaging through shelves, or keep track of their most pressing requirements.
Subscription services allow consumers to ‘subscribe and save’ by offering a discount up front rather than paying full price each time they reorder (or spend more money upfront and instead pay when they receive the next batch of your product, without having to go shopping or remember to place another order).
Subscriptions provide consumers with the opportunity to save money by offsetting extra revenue against a monthly, quarterly, or annual baseline of income.
8. Switch to sustainable shipping options
Customers are far more conscious than they have been in the past about how freight might affect the environment. Customers care about how shipping affects the environment much more than they used to, according to 70 percent of respondents.
Switching to a greener shipping approach might include using compostable and recyclable packaging. As more consumers seek for environmentally friendly brands, utilizing eco-friendly packaging is becoming increasingly widespread.
If you’re searching for a green ecommerce shipping solution, consider carbon-neutral delivery or outsource fulfillment to an eco-friendly fulfillment provider like Launch Fulfillment.
Partnering with Pachama, which allows merchants to offset their carbon emissions via investments in Pachama’s authorized forest initiatives, extends from the North Atlantic coast of the United States to the Amazon rainforest. You may learn more about the integration and how it works here.
9. Personalize your packaging
Customizing your product packaging after an order has been placed is a wonderful approach to delight your consumers. The extra time will seem more personalized for that consumer, assuring brand loyalty.
Customized branded packaging allows you to improve brand recognition and generate good social proof while also allowing you to increase brand awareness. Customers are more likely to want to share their experience with others, especially on social media, since the unboxing process is well-planned and distinctive.
10. Ask your customers for feedback
It’s critical to continue to enhance the delivery experience after orders are fulfilled. It’s crucial to send an email asking how the delivery went after items have been delivered. These emails may be set up to be automated, so they are sent in a timely manner.
Getting customer feedback can help you improve your supply chain and focus on areas that need the most attention. It’s also a good idea to keep an eye on consumer reviews about your company online and respond to any bad shipping experiences. Customers want to be heard and acknowledged, which is something you may do right now.