small business owner shipping packages

Turn Your Shipping Pains Into Shipping Gains

  • November 11th, 2017
  • Grant Olsen

When it comes to getting your deliveries from Point A to Point B, it’s essential that you get your ship together. This means evaluating every step of the process, because there are always areas for improvement. The good news is that once you fix the flaws in your shipping system, the benefits will be magnified exponentially based on your annual volume.

Imagine that. You’d no longer get a pit in your stomach every time you placed a package on the scale. You’d no longer dread the sound of a FedEx truck pulling up in front of your office. You’d no longer associate the color brown with pain and loss. And you’d no longer flinch every time someone says the words “residential fees.”

For small businesses, shipping will always be a substantial expense. It’s unavoidable. But what is avoidable is overpaying for it all. Read on for a few handy tips that may just help you shave money off your shipping costs.

Don’t just choose the first shipper who comes your way

Most successful companies work with multiple shipping partners. Why? Because different shippers offer different benefits. For example, USPS is often cheapest for packages under two pounds. And they don’t charge residential fees. For heavier packages, however, you’ll probably save money by going with FedEx or UPS. Take the time to figure out which shipper can give you the biggest savings for your various shipping needs.  

Reuse your boxes and packing materials

Your business receives packages, right? Don’t throw them away! Turn around and use those boxes and packing materials for your own shipping needs, which is simultaneously friendly to your wallet and the earth. This approach isn’t perfect for every shipping job, but it can be a great way to lower your overall expenses.

Buy your new shipping materials in bulk

Okay, so you’re obviously not going to be able to get away with nothing but previously used boxes for all your shipments. But you can still save money by anticipating your annual shipping needs and buying packaging materials in bulk. Storage may be an issue for some business owners, but it’s worth finding a solution, because this is an easy way to reduce costs.

Always go with the smallest box possible

Sounds super basic, right? But most people don’t do it. They see a larger-than-necessary box and think, “That’ll work just fine if I add a few shovelfuls of packing peanuts.” But if you go with a streamlined package, you’ll save money on materials and the shipping.

About the Author

  • Grant Olsen

Grant Olsen is a marketing and technology writer. He has written for healthcare companies, outdoor gear manufacturers, international airports, and dozens of small businesses. He is also the author of the book “Rhino Trouble.”

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