6 Tips for Successful Business Shipping
When you need to ship multiple items to your clients, you have two goals: on time and undamaged delivery. Follow these six shipping tips, and you’ll get your delivery there on time and in great shape, every time:
1. Use a common carrier: Carriers like UPS and FedEx make it easy for you to ship: they give you tracking numbers so you always know where your package is. If you need it, they can also provide packaging for your shipment.
2. Ship as slowly and as early as possible: Prepare to ship early if possible. Shipping early saves you and or your customer money. Remember, the arrival time may vary, depending on carrier routes. If you can, plan to get your shipment there a day ahead of time, especially if you’ve got a critical deadline.
3. Fill in as many fields as you can: There are real advantages to taking a few extra minutes to fill in “non-essential” fields. By using other fields on the air bill (company or department name, project number, PO number) you know what the shipment is, and where it’s going inside of the company.
4. Use your client’s shipping number: To get the best shipping rate, ask to use your their number. They may have a better shipping discount than you do, and even if they don’t, you won’t have to bill them for shipping: the carrier does that directly.
5. Declare value: Shipping initially covers up to $100 for loss or damage. But when your shipment is valued beyond $100, declare its full value to get coverage. It costs a little extra, but that insurance is well worth it if your shipment is damaged or lost. Remember, if you are reselling the items (like print or t-shirts for example), you own the product until your customer receives it. If it’s lost in transit, it’s your loss to recover.
6. Make your box standout: If you’re shipping to destinations where there are dozens or hundreds of packages (a trade show or event, for example), a plain brown box will look like all the others. Put colorful stickers or labels on all four sides and use your company logo or your clients logo printed on a neon color paper if you can. Send the recipient a PDF’d copy of the colorful label so he or she will know what they’re looking for.
Successful business shipping is the final hurdle. Getting it there, on time, ensures customer satisfaction and is one more reason to do business with you again.