When it comes to overhead expenses, shipping may not always be front and center in your mind. The cost of shipping items can really start to snowball if you’re not paying close attention.
In order to save money on shipping, there are a few things you can do to cut costs.
Check out these helpful tips that can make cutting excess shipping costs simple and easy.
Shop Available Carriers
Sure, you’re probably friends with your UPS delivery driver and you have a great working relationship. That doesn’t mean you can’t shop around with other carriers for better rates.
Ask a variety of shipping services what general fees they charge and find out if you can get a discount if you set up an account. Most large carriers will provide businesses with lower rates since they tend to ship in larger volumes.
If the items that you ship are almost always a certain weight, use that data to determine which shipping company has the lowest costs. Not only will you save money, but you can pass those savings onto your customers, too.
Don’t be afraid to ask for perks that are offered exclusively to businesses such as free shipping materials or labels. Anywhere you can cut costs is a bonus for your company.
Reuse Packaging to Save Money on Shipping
From bubble wrap and packing tape to boxes, the cost of shipping materials can really add up. If you find that the piles of unused materials are starting to get out of control, consider reusing materials.
If you’re not too concerned with the way your boxes look, don’t hesitate to reuse them! Whenever you get an incoming shipment, save that packaging to use for your own outgoing parcels.
Not only will you save money when you reuse packing materials, but you’re also being eco-friendly. Talk to your employees and encourage them to start reusing things you might normally toss in the trash.
Try Freight Shipping
If you have a large number of shipments daily, or if your items are heavier in weight and larger in size, freight shipping could save you money. A freight delivery service might actually cost you less than traditional carriers.
Schedule your outgoing items on a weekly basis, and you’ll be able to consolidate your packages much more efficiently. Companies like Unishippers and other freight providers offer competitive rates on bulk shipping.
Using the freight option can make your outgoing package process much more streamlined, therefore saving time. And everyone knows that in business, time is money.
Don’t Overdo It
Sure, you want the items you ship to be protected from damage. You definitely don’t want your customers to receive a damaged package in the mail, which can be even more costly.
However, do you really need all that bubble wrap? What about those extra-large boxes you’re using to ship a small item?
Consider the amount of packaging you’re using and see where you can cut corners. It’s not necessary to use bigger boxes and tons of cushioning for a small, sturdy item.
By figuring out where you can reduce your package sizes and the number of packing materials used, you can reduce costs. Should you make sure everything you send is protected? Absolutely, but that doesn’t mean you need to overdo it when it’s not necessary.
Utilize Media Mail
If you’re shipping items like books, compact discs, DVS, or stickers, media mail can be your best friend. This affordable option is only slightly slower than first class mail, and it’s a heck of a lot less expensive.
For other small items, first class mail is usually sufficient. Shipping using media and first class mail will always be your best bet in terms of cost for smaller, lighter items.
On the other hand, if the things you ship are heavier and larger, it’s time to start negotiating costs with various carriers.
Try to Ship In-House
Depending on the size of your business, you can save a lot by shipping directly from your location. What does this mean?