For shipping and deliveries within the UK or internationally, businesses can either use the Royal Mail or a courier to send their postal boxes, pallet loads or even items in small mailing bags – if they do not have their own dedicated fleet. For small businesses it is convenient to ‘pop it in the post’, or for larger businesses to arrange shipping and deliveries with couriers.
Unfortunately accidents can happen, if any damages occur during transit it’s likely that the retailer can be found accountable – despite it necessarily not being their fault. It might also mean retailers may have to incur the costs associated with the order.
As far as the customer is concerned, they placed an order from your business and they received a damaged product, regardless of it leaving your warehouse on time, and in tip top condition.
A happy online shopper is one that has received their delivery in the post, and of course, as expected. We are captivated by videos and pictures of unboxing or when a parcel is perfectly packed – who wouldn’t want to share their latest purchase.
However, if a delivery is delayed or if the parcel is received in poor condition, this would probably result in a very unhappy shopper. And this customer is likely to share their disappointment on social media with a sad or angry Emoji, instead of a smiley cheery face.
In such a competitve market, customers are spoilt for choice and are not afraid to return their orders and look elsewhere.
Whether you have your own fleet of delivery vans, or not, here are some pointers to help you improve the efficiencies of your delivery and to help ensure a happy customer.
#1 Deliver directly to letterboxes
When the size, weight or value of goods permit, use envelopes and mailing bags or postal boxes that can fit through post boxes or letter boxes. Online retailers can improve efficiency by using letter-box design available packaging suited to products, but also, to reduce costs. This also decreases the number of touchpoints that could go wrong before it safely reaches the customer’s hands.
Benefits to the customer:
- No missed delivery and redelivery needing scheduled
- No parcels left in unsecure places or left outside and subjected to adverse weather conditions affected by the weather
- No misshaped or unpresentable parcels from oversized packaging
Benefits for the retailer:
- No additional postal costs from using packaging too large for the size of the product
- No unnecessary or additional void fill needed to protect the product
- No admin time rescheduling deliveries and drivers redelivering parcels
- No storage space needed to hold the redeliveries
Source: Royal Mail
The European standard EN 13724:2002 standardises the size of letter boxes across Europe, this ensures all post within the set dimensions can be successfully posted through customers’ doors. Unfortunately, the UK did not adopt this regulation1 meaning letter box dimensions do slightly vary. Despite this, to increase the deliverability a business must adhere to the strict postal size and weight restrictions letters and parcels from the Royal Mail and the UK standard delivery information from the Post Office, and also, make sure the efficiency and the quality of the packaging is the most suited.
#2 Efficient and quality packaging
You won’t have as much control over the journey and conditions of your deliveries if you use a delivery company. To help the success of your deliveries, some steps can be taken such as understanding how to use packaging labels and hazard labels, informing the carrier how the parcel should be handled or even making sure the parcels are sealed correctly by knowing how to use packaging tape. Even if your business has its own delivery vehicles – you can still benefit by making sure the most effective and appropriate packaging is used.
- To reduce packaging costs: Insert your measurements into our box finder or bag finder, and the right sized cardboard box or bag will be displayed. Meaning, products will not shift in packaging that’s too big, no extra void fill needed to fill spaces, or damages from the loose-fitting packaging – which will also make the parcel look unpresentable.
- Innovative packaging materials: Simplify packing with multi-purpose and versatile packaging materials. Packaging with integrated protection, such as mailing bags with adhesive strips (no tape is required), foam postal boxes, with protective inner foam lining or book boxes, will completely wrap around securing the products.
- Custom-made and bespoke packaging: Designed to fit specific products so packaging dimensions can be maximised. Bespoke packaging also reduces the need for additional packaging, as with most bespoke packaging the protection is included into the design – preventing contact with the main outside packaging layer and the product itself.
For advice on your packaging operation, contact our Packaging Specialists on 0800 542 44 28, or email firstname.lastname@example.org.