Why Price is the Least Important Characteristic when Choosing a Carrier
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Logistics is one of the most important parts for an online store because it’s what ensures that the product reaches the customer’s hands. And that is, after all, the reason that led your customer to shop at your store in the first place. That is why it is fundamental that the logistics partner suits the specific needs of each eCommerce.
However, it is common for shopkeepers to be tempted to choose the carrier based only on the price they offer, without taking into account other characteristics essential in a delivery. And it makes sense why they do it: the less is spend on transportation, the less you charge the customer and the cheaper your offer is. And lower prices usually attract more customers. But, it is important to remember that often the cheap comes at a high price. And in some cases, the price you pay is one that no online store should be willing to pay: its customers.
But if price is not the most important characteristic when choosing a carrier, what are the factors that an online store needs to take into consideration?
Key Features to Consider When Choosing a Carrier
There are 5 key attributes that you should look into when looking for delivery partner. But better than that is knowing which one is most important for your type of product or for your online store. If your store sells food, perhaps the best carrier is not the same as a store that does delivers often to other countries. Check below all the characteristics that you should take into account and analyse which of these items is more important to your business and to your customers.
Speed of Deliveries
With companies such as Amazon and Alibaba in the eCommerce market, the expectations that consumers had regarding delivery time have changed. Currently, the speed of delivery is one of the factors most valued by the consumer and a fast delivery can make the difference between buying from your store or from the competition.
So if a fast delivery is imperative to the running of your business (for example, if you sell perishable food products) or if it is something that will boost your company’s sales significantly, you need to ensure that the carrier you choose is agile and delivers your orders in a short time.
The carriers’ network, as well as having a direct impact on the speed of the deliveries, will also impact the traceability of the orders and the resolution of potential problems.
That is, each carrier has its delivery network. There are carriers that can have a good national network, but not internationally – and vice versa. In addition, carriers present different business models when it comes to international deliveries. For example, there are some carriers that do not have a strong network outside their country, so when there are cross-border deliveries, orders are passed to a partner. Thus, in addition to increasing the risk of mistakes being made, when there is a problem with a particular order, it becomes much more complicated to obtain clarification and therefore inform your customers of the current state of the order.
Therefore, if you make many international deliveries, when choosing a carrier, you should evaluate the most frequent destinations of your company, check the quality of the carriers’ network in those locations and if there is any peculiarity in the business model which is worth taking into account.
Drop-off Point or Pick-up Service
Although this is not one of the first characteristics that pops in shop owners head when choosing a carrier, this is one of the main aspects that will influence their day-to-day.
Different eCommerces have different needs. For certain businesses, it is best when a carrier collects orders at a certain time on scheduled days. For other stores, the best may be to go to a drop-off point to send their orders. The important thing is to have a choice, since the best option will end up saving you a lot of time and energy.
The possibility of products being damaged or lost during transport is one of the biggest fears for the consumer, because now has to go through the process of returning the product, as well as for the online store. In addition to having to deal with a disgruntled customer and the entire return process, most online stores also lose money because carriers often do not offer insurance for lost or damaged orders.
So always take into account the insurance that the carrier offers for these situations, especially if the products you sell are of a high value.
And finally, the price. Yes, it is clear that although it is not the most important factor, price should still be taken into account, along with the other characteristics mentioned above. After all, the prices that a carrier imposes may impact the company economically. But, remember: sometimes it’s worth paying a bit more for a delivery that will ensure the right service you need, than saving and risking losing customers. After all, the cost of maintaining a customer is much better than the cost of acquiring a new consumer.
Conclusion: Why Price is the Least Important Characteristic when Choosing a Carrier
Although price is an important feature, it shouldn’t be the only aspect to consider when choosing a logistics partner. There are other characteristics that will affect your company. Losing an order when you ship to another country due to a weak international network or a delivery taking longer than promised can translate into a customer’s loss of confidence. And that always becomes more expensive.