Black Friday is all the rage as people are trying to finish (or start) their Christmas shopping. The massive sales and site traffic can feel overwhelming to someone who has just started their ecommerce business. So, how do you prepare for what could be the busiest shipping days of your year? Read on, and we’ll share some of our best shipping tips on things like poly mailers and shipping options to make your Black Friday sale a success!
What is Black Friday?
Black Friday is a colloquial term for the Friday following Thanksgiving Day in the United States. Since 2005, Black Friday is generally considered to be the busiest shopping day of the year in the United States. Retailers offer huge, highly promoted sales and open very early to ring them into the black before the year is over.
What is Ecommerce Shipping?
Ecommerce shipping covers all services required to transport products purchased online from a retailer to the customers’ delivery destination. With the proper planning and shipping tips, ecommerce shipping can be fast, affordable, and an excellent choice for scaling your small business.
There are many different choices for ecommerce shipping, and it is essential to understand the different shipping speeds and what would work best for you and your products. Additionally, prices and shipping speeds vary due to the carrier you choose. Follow our shipping tips to ensure you are ready for Black Friday!
Ecommerce Shipping Methods
- 2-Day shipping
- Same-Day Delivery
- Overnight Shipping
- Expedited Shipping
We all know Amazon Prime wowed everyone with their 2-day shipping option, getting goods from warehouses to consumers at lightning-fast speeds. While you may not believe that premium shipping is something you can offer and think you should leave it to the pros, don’t count yourself out! This is the best ecommerce shipping option because it keeps your small business competitive.
Same-day delivery will guarantee your order is delivered the same day it’s purchased. While same-day delivery is one of the most popular options, particularly close to the holidays, it requires successfully executing resources and technology to make it happen. So, make sure to note our shipping tips as you make your decision!
While two-day shipping continues to be the popular choice, it’s essential to learn how to stand out from the crowd. Overnight shipping guarantees customers will receive their order on the next business day. Depending on the carrier you use, prices may vary. This is a great ecommerce shipping option if it’s something you can execute.
Expedited shipping is a faster shipping option, but it has no definitive timeframe. This is because it can vary by carrier and ecommerce shipping services. Expedited allows you the opportunity to build a loyal customer base while offering shipping speeds above ground shipping. This is a great ecommerce shipping option allowing you to offer something to your customers without putting stringent guidelines on yourself.
What is a Poly Mailer?
A poly mailer is a lightweight envelope made of plastic. This moisture-resistant and durable mailer may look thin; however, it offers a layer of protection that will ensure your product arrives at your customer’s doorstep in perfect condition.
How to Choose a Good Poly Mailer?
Many factors determine what makes a good quality poly mailer. For this shipping tip, learn what to look for in a quality poly mailer. You’ll want to take weight, size, warning tag options, and more into consideration to help ensure your product stays safe and protected in transit.
Choosing the right lightweight poly mailer is also dependent on what you are using the mailer for. If you are shipping clothes and other lightweight items, you need to choose the proper size mailer to fit your needs. If you choose to ship something that needs a little extra protection, you can use a bubble mailer that offers an added layer.
How to Choose the Right Poly Mailer Size
- Type of Product
- Know the Dimensions
- Test the Process
Make Sure to Measure Your Product
Measure the height, length, and width of your product before putting it in your lightweight poly mailer. This shipping tip will ensure you don’t overpay in shipping! Remember, you’re paying for the weight, so if you choose a mailer that’s too big, the extra space can add to the weight and cause you to lose money.
What Type of Product is it?
If you are shipping something soft, such as clothing, you can fit it in a lightweight poly mailer that is the same size as your product. The product should fit nice and snug in your mailer. If it is something more fragile, make sure you fill the void so it doesn’t break!
Filling the void ensures your product will stay put in the mailer during transit. You can put all sorts of materials in your mailer to fill the open space and keep your fragile product protected.
Know if the Dimensions of Your Mailer are Interior or Exterior Measurements
When buying poly mailers in bulk, account for your product size. If you are shipping the same product all the time, great! But what if a customer wants to buy three of the items instead of one? Be prepared with a larger mailer that will allow you to bundle.
Measure your product alone, and then measure a few of them together. This will help you cover all your bases when it comes to ordering the correct size poly mailers. Then, you’ll want to double-check the dimensions of the poly mailer you are buying to confirm if the measurements they are giving are for the interior or exterior of the mailers.
Where Can I Buy Poly Mailers?
We have explained everything about poly mailers, from choosing the right size to what items you can ship in them, but where can you buy them? A quick online search will show numerous options for purchasing mailers. However, avoid unknown sites and cheaply made mailers.
Saving a few cents sounds appealing, but these cheaper options won’t properly protect your item. Spend the extra few cents for high-quality mailers to give you some peace of mind for your shipments. We stand by our high-quality poly mailers!
Qualities of A Good Poly Mailer
Poly mailers are lightweight, making them easy to use, transport, and store. Their durability protects your items from punctures or damage from liquid, dirt, or dust. They are eco-friendly, as they’re made with polyethylene material that is strong, giving them a longer shelf life. Therefore, less waste goes into the environment, and minimal materials are needed for constant production.
How to Prepare Your Ecommerce Store for Black Friday
Now that you know where to buy your poly mailers, which size to buy, and your preferred ecommerce shipping method, it is time to prepare your business! If this is your first Black Friday, be prepared for a lot of traffic to your site. If you are creating a large sale on your site, you may have numerous orders coming through and need to be prepared to ship them out as early as the next day. Customers shopping on Black Friday are generally shopping for gifts for others, though some buy something for themselves!
Three Things You Need for a Successful Black Friday
Create Compelling Offers
Anyone can offer a discount of a certain percent as a sale. But what can you do to set yourself apart from others? Why should they come to you? What makes your sale better than the rest? Focus on your products and inventory before choosing what you are offering to your customers.
Stock Up on Products
If you create a specific product and are shipping from your home, ensure that you have enough inventory before having a major sale. It is essential to have enough inventory to meet the demand and traffic you could receive on Black Friday. If you make the items after they are ordered, have enough materials on hand to create them right away, ensuring you have plenty of time to get them to your customers.
Check Out the Competition
A quick google search will give you insight into what your competitors are offering and how to stack yourself against the competition. Focus on standing out from them, whether it’s offering a unique product or a bundle sale. Keep your customer base as the focus during planning.
Make Black Friday Shipping a Breeze with our Ecommerce Shipping Tips
- Delivery Cutoff
- Shipping Options
- Return Policy
- Shipping Costs
Tell Your Customers About Everything Up Front
Customers love to buy from small businesses to show support for unique products and for the transparency offered. The success of small businesses depends on transparency. From inventory, delivery dates, and any shipping costs, being upfront with your customers will only benefit you and ensure you don’t lose a sale. This ecommerce shipping tip will keep your customers coming back and help you avoid any headaches.
Set Your Cutoff Dates
A big ecommerce shipping tip we recommend is to include cutoff dates. Set your cutoff dates to ensure that you have enough time to complete all inventory. Once the product is packaged and dropped off, you have no control over it. That is why it’s essential to keep up with shipping deadlines year-round for different carriers to ensure your products make it as promised to the customer.
Many carriers put the necessary shipping deadlines for the holidays on their sites, giving you plenty of time to plan! Holiday shipping deadlines are essential to ensure that every order your customers place makes it to them in the timeframe they need it. This year, UPS, FedEx, and USPS all recommend shipping your items no later than December 15, 2021, using ground shipping for your items to arrive in time for Christmas.
Offer Different Ecommerce Shipping Options
One of our best ecommerce shipping tips is to offer multiple shipping options to cater to your customers. Some customers prefer to spend extra money to have their packages sooner while others don’t mind waiting. Remember that whatever you offer, you are committing to! Do your research and keep up with your ecommerce shipping options to keep your customers happy.
Set Clear Expectations for Your Return Policy
This may not seem like an ecommerce shipping tip, but the truth is that once you drop your items off to be sent to your customer, things are out of your hands. Unfortunately, items can get damaged in transit, arrive late, or even get lost altogether, causing a poor experience for your customer.
A return policy covers anything that may happen once your products are in transit. Provide added peace of mind to your customers, ensuring replacement or reimbursement if something happens. Make sure that your return policy is easily accessible and covers any applicable fees.
Have You thought About Free Shipping?
This may not sound like an ecommerce shipping tip, but it is! There are ways to offer free shipping that benefit you, particularly on Black Friday! The hope is that customers are buying more than one item from your site, so offer free shipping on “bundles” or for customers who spend above a certain amount. These commonly used ecommerce shipping options help absorb business costs while still offering something for your customers.
Test it Out!
While many don’t test out their ecommerce shipping process, it is one of our top shipping tips. It allows you to do a dry run on your products, sizing, shipping speeds, and costs.
Testing will allow you to iron out any kinks and give you peace of mind!
Write down our shipping tips, noting things that worked best during the testing process, for an easier time with ecommerce shipping during your Black Friday sale.
It may feel daunting to prepare for Black Friday and ensure you have everything you need to succeed, but we are here to help. Grab your poly mailers and any other materials you need from us to make sure your supply won’t run low!
While this may be the busiest time of year, it is usually the most successful time as well. Follow our guidelines and shipping tips so you can feel more prepared than ever going into this year’s holiday season. Black Friday has nothing on you!