The Importance of a Good Delivery Strategy

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A good customer experience is just as important for eCommerce retailers as it is for brick-and-mortar retailers. In fact, one might argue that that delivery strategy is more important than ever for online stores, as in these cases, customers only have two real opportunities to measure their experience with you.

  1. Their web experience when they search for the product and then make the purchase
  2. The delivery experience and how long it takes to receive the product

With only these two chances to really get it right with the customer, and because almost 60% of customers are likely to attrite after a lousy shopping experience, you need to make sure that your delivery service becomes a phenomenal experience. With so many customers willing to walk away from your brand after a bad shopping experience, know that over 80% of customers will not return if their delivery does not go well.

Today’s Customers Expect Fast Delivery

Even as retailers are strategizing on how to provide faster shipping methods for their customers, those very same customers are changing their expectations. In fact, with the advent of Amazon Prime and so many next-day shipping options, people expect that immediate gratification that comes from a quick delivery.

Quick delivery, however, does not mean that delivery that results in damage products should become a greater risk. Customers expect the item to arrive fast and in the condition that they expect. Thankfully, most customers do not assume that their package will be delivered by the merchant that they purchased the item from, which means that third-party carriers are acceptable and, in most cases, anticipated. But since customers want to be able to track their deliveries, carriers such as USPS, UPS, and FedEx are excellent choices as each of these service providers offers a variety of timed delivery options, with tracking available for all key steps in the process.

Free Delivery should be a Staple Offer for eCommerce Merchants

While fast delivery should always be available, fast is not synonymous with free. Customers do want choices in their delivery options, but in almost all situations, those who want fast delivery will know that it comes at a price. Unfortunately, in recent years, the USPS has been increasing its package delivery rates, and much of this is tied to lost revenue now that people are purchasing fewer stamps. Therefore, with fast delivery UPS and FedEx can usually provide lower rates for packages that are two pounds or more in weight. When shipping under two pounds, the USPS can provide very competitive rates.

Free delivery or shipping, however, should be provided as an option for customers. Although free shipping absolutely encourages the customer to convert and proceed with a transaction, it doesn’t always match where the customer is at in the various stages of the purchase cycle. So, free shipping works occasionally for some people, but not always. Free shipping is as checkered as any other aspect of e-commerce. Free shipping really is a psychological ploy that is designed to attract shoppers by utilizing a specific method. Anytime we use the word “free” in our marketing; it elicits a positive response as well as an added value for the customer. But again, free shipping works only if your customer is in the right phase of that buying cycle.

The Benefits of the Better Shipping App for your Shopify Site

As you can see, customers expect to have a choice. They want to know that they can get a product quickly if they are looking for that fast or immediate gratification, but they also want to know that they can get free shipping if they aren’t in as much of a hurry. Of course, when both fast and free can be combined, it will provide even further value and will be sure to delight customers of all kinds, provided the product arrives in one piece and with no damage.

There is also a need for that in-between shipping option. When you offer your customer three tiers such as those outlined below, you can be sure that you are meeting the customer where ever they are in the purchase cycle.

  • Fast shipping – Shipping that enables a product to arrive in just a few days or less, often comes at a higher rate
  • Standard shipping – Economically priced shipping that is not as expedient as a fast shipping, high-rate method, but gets the product to a customer within a reasonable and compelling amount of time.
  • Free shipping – In most cases, this method takes the longest as merchants are taking on the expense of transportation and need to ensure that they do not incur more out of pocket expenses than is completely necessary.

The Better Shipping app is an add-on that can be plugged into your Shopify eCommerce site. Many merchants desire this functionality so that they can set suitable rates that will satisfy the customer. Using ‘per product’ shipping prices through the Better Shipping add-on, allows merchants to set shipping prices for each of their products. For example, this means that you can dictate $5.00 shipping for one of the products in your assortment, $7.50 for another, and have free shipping on a third product, or any variation in between.

Tiered shipping is also an option with this feature, which means that you can set various shipping rates for an item depending on how many that the customer intends to buy. This allows your customers to save money, and you to be more efficient in your shipping practices. Thus, this is a win-win for both customers and merchants.

Maximizing your Delivery Strategy by Partnering with Shop Style Design

If you want to design a delivery strategy for your Shopify site to ensure that you can delight each and every one of your customers, partners such as Shop Style Design are experts in the space and are ready to help. Our skilled designers and developers have years of Shopify experience and are well-versed in delivery strategies that genuinely deliver (pun intended). Contact the Shop Style Design team to set up a free consultation so that we can help you help your site become profitable and meet, if not exceed, your customer’s delivery expectations.

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