It’s completely understandable to worry about shipping times, and how they might affect your sales. We’re living in a time of instant gratification, in which consumers are getting many of their online purchases on-demand or within a few days. So, how does this affect your drop-shipping business? We know it can certainly affect your customers’ perception, but shipping times are subjective and depend on several factors.
Shipping times can sometimes be a bit of an inconvenience. But there are certainly ways to make sure your customers are satisfied. Here are some tips for knowing what your customers might expect and how you can work around any potential issues.
1. Set Expectations
Your business will go a long way with transparency, honesty, and treating customers with respect.
You’ll want to make sure you are correctly communicating shipping times to your customers. This is especially important for first-time customers.
Give your customers a heads-up about any items that might take longer to get to them. This could include things that need to be shipped from overseas or items that need to be shipped from a different warehouse. If you give your customers this notice, and they understand that there could be a delay, it will make it easier for them to understand, and buy from you again.
It’s also essential to keep your customers updated on the status of their orders. It’s important to communicate with them about their order and get their feedback. This will help you know if you need to change anything or do a good job.
Set Shipping Times Before Products Can Be Added To Cart
It’s best to give shipping times before customers add items to their shopping cart rather than after. Then, if your stock isn’t available within the shipping time, you can suggest a different product. Remember that shipping times should be in your policies!
2. Customers Don’t Mind Waiting For Quality
This is factual, no matter the platform or shipping speed. If your stock is high-quality and has an excellent reputation, your customers will be willing to wait for it. They’ll be more than happy to wait a few extra days for a new item if it means they’re getting something they want. That’s why your items must be of good quality and unique! You want your customers to be happy with their purchases, and if they trust you and your brand, they’ll be more willing to wait for a quality product.
If you don’t have a quality product, then you’ll have to invest in faster shipping. Find a reliable courier that can deliver your items within a day or two. This will give your customers a reason to buy from you and can help with your sales.
3. Appeal to Impulse Buyers
There’s nothing wrong with impulse buying; it’s done all the time! Impulse buying can give customers a rush of excitement. Knowing that they are getting something new that they love can be super exciting.
That’s why it’s safe to assume that your customers are buying products that aren’t critical to their livelihoods. They can and will live without instant gratification regarding non-critical products like fashion accessories, gadgets, and home decor. That’s why shipping speed for your drop-shipping company isn’t vital for your business’ success.
If your customers are buying non-critical products, shipping speed isn’t the most critical factor. The most important factor to them is the deal they are getting.
4. Choose Stock That Ships Quickly
This may seem like a no-brainer, but your drop-shipping business is heavily dependent on the supplier. If you’re using a site like AliExpress, consider selling items that offer faster shipping. Typically, faster shipping is something you have to pay for. However, you can sort by AliExpress’ warehouses and see if you can find products closer to your buyer’s region.
A lot of times, there are items in the same category that offer faster shipping for free. For instance, if you’re selling a T-shirt, the shipping time may differ depending on the supplier.
5. Embrace the Power of the Disclaimer
Providing a disclaimer before the customer purchases one of your products gives you both peace of mind. They know when the item is expected, and you know that they (hopefully) aren’t going to be emailing asking when it’ll be there.
Transparency is vitally important for your drop-shipping business. The customer is more likely to buy from you again when they’ve had their expectations met, so be sure to be clear, transparent, and respectable.
6. Keep Customers up to Date on Their Orders
As a general rule, you should update customers on the status of their orders at least once a week, but you can update them more frequently if they ask for updates. If the customer hasn’t received an update, they’re likely to email you for one.
If you’re not keeping customers up-to-date on their orders, you’re not only losing the chance to build customer loyalty, but you’re also making a wrong impression. It’s a sign of sloppy business.
Automated emails to your customers are a great idea. The customer knows to expect the email when they haven’t heard from you in a while, and they’re not going to be as likely to wonder if you’re ignoring them.
If you’re looking for a way to automate the process of keeping your customers updated, you can use a service like MailChimp to send emails to your customers.
If automated emails aren’t your style, you can use a service like ShipStation to send updates at certain times. The point is, you need to keep the customer updated.
Communication Is Key
Communication between you and your customers is the most critical part of getting around the inconvenience of slow shipping speeds. Your customer knows they aren’t ordering anything necessary of their livelihood, which is why they are comfortable waiting for their purchase. However, there are ways to boost your customer’s happiness and satisfaction with your drop-shipping company, like email updates, disclaimers, stock considerations, and more. Consider rethinking your business’ shipping plan to provide higher customer satisfaction and boost your sales today.