Shipping costs are often one of the biggest expenses for small businesses. Whether you are sending products directly to consumers or shipping goods internationally, there are numerous costs involved at every stage of the process. From packing and postage to fuel to international freight, these costs can really add up and negatively impact your profit margins.
But if you are smart about your shipping, you will be able to reduce costs and make the whole process even more efficient. Take a look at these five tips for saving money on shipping.
If you use a shipping company to deliver your goods, are you sure you’re getting the best possible deal? It’s always worth shopping around and getting quotes from different firms to find the best price. And don’t feel you have to accept the first offer you’re given, as you may be able to negotiate a better rate. Make sure you opt for a reputable shipping company that offers reasonable rates, rather than just going for the cheapest outfit you can find. Always dig into any contracts or agreements to make sure there are no hidden charges.
Buy in bulk
If you send your products directly to the consumer, you’re probably spending a great deal on postage supplies. Stamps, boxes, wrapping paper, envelopes, and packing materials can all add up. Consider buying these in bulk to get a better price. You will have to spend a little more initially, but it will end up being a lot cheaper in the long run. Make sure you always ship items in appropriately-sized boxes to avoid spending unnecessary amounts on shipping.
Take on other deliveries
If you use your own trucks and lorries for shipping, you can make a bit of money in the process by using a load board. This is essentially a job board where other companies post deliveries that they need shipping. If these are on your shipping route, then you can bid for the job and carry their load for a price. Since it’s on your way, it will result in no additional cost as well as provide an extra source of income.
Be more fuel-efficient
Fuel costs can be one of the biggest expenses for any business, but it’s an area where it’s so easy to save money. Instruct drivers in fuel-efficient driving, with techniques like going easy on the accelerator, changing gears earlier, and coasting to decelerate. Opting for more fuel-efficient vehicles will also make a huge difference.
Get third-party insurance
Any company that ships goods will know it’s essential to ensure your cargo, but there may be an opportunity to save a lot of money in this area. Many carriers charge merchants high rates on insuring their goods, which can add up to substantial amounts for large deliveries. Instead, try insuring through a third-party provider, and you’ll find the rates are significantly lower.
Inordinately high shipping costs should not be a barrier to your business. By following these tips, you’ll be able to save a great deal of money and improve your delivery efficiency at the same time.