For many businesses, it’s never easy to get their products shipped to their customers. In fact, there are various things that can go wrong when it comes to business shipping. For instance, aside from dealing with hefty fees, business owners may deal with damaged products and lost packages.
Fortunately, there’s a solution for every business shipping challenge. One of these solutions includes finding the best customs broker to help you expedite your shipment’s customs clearance.
Other than that, to help you avoid customer complaints regarding your shipments and solve your biggest shipping concerns quickly, below are the common shipping challenges and ways to address them effectively:
One of the toughest and most common shipping challenges for businesses is delays. There are several reasons why delays happen. Often, delays are classified into two forms, which are internal delays and external delays.
When it comes to external delays, they’re typically due to some factors, such as delivery vehicle breakdown, poor weather conditions, and heavy traffic. In this kind of delay, there’s nothing you can do to resolve such issues.
That’s why some companies have created solutions, like delivering products via drone. However, such solutions aren’t practical. So, the only best way to address it is to inform your customers as soon as possible about the possibility of shipment delays.
Internal delays, on the contrary, are something you can control if you’re aware of them. For example, you can prepare your items as usual without any customization. With this, you can easily hand them over to your preferred shipping couriers.
If you’re planning to send packages to other countries, be sure to prepare the important documents required by the customs to improve your business’s delivery process. This is because authorities may put your shipments on hold if you don’t have the right documents.
Damaged Items During Shipping Or Handling
As a business owner, you should be aware of the harsh conditions in most shipping streams. The forces that shipments may face as they’re loaded in the ships, trucks, and planes are greater than what they’re experiencing when sitting at your home or business location.
To resolve this problem, have a proper crating and packaging scheme in place. If your items are packed or placed in shipping crates well, the risk of damage is reduced.
Even if the possibility of this shipping challenge is rare, business owners may feel uneasy once their orders are returned. The situation can be much tougher to decipher if you have an inexperienced or unorganized order management system. In addition, you can miss some of your orders if your warehouse is big or if you’re dealing with countless orders every day.
Also, if you use third-party shipping carriers for your business shipments, you’ll need to contact them to find your packages. If you’re out of luck, the search might take several days, weeks, or even months.
To avoid this frustrating situation, you should always keep in touch with your chosen delivery agent. Luckily, there are some shipping plugins you can use to track your shipments in real-time. This kind of feature has different order status checkpoints, which will keep both shipping carriers and business owners aware in case an order was lost or misplaced.
Some things outside your control may affect shipping routes. Political unrest, pandemic, and natural disasters are some of them. While such events are unpredictable and can’t be prevented, think of other ways to deal with them.
For instance, you can work with the best shipping logistics service providers that monitor every event that may affect their shipping routes. If problems arise, they’ll take advantage of their industry contacts to change the path of their shipments to avoid any possible trouble in the long run.
Customers Refuse The Delivery
Even if it’s uncommon, there are instances wherein some customers don’t pay their orders and would often request to return them. This may happen for some typical justifications, such as when customers made the wrong placement or the items they received were damaged or incorrect.
Regardless of the case, it’s never simple to manage returns. The reason behind it is that you need to get the orders back, unpack your items, and place them back in your inventory. Handling returns may also cost you time and money.
To avoid losing resources and lessen the hassle, you can make a minimum order limit for cash on delivery (COD) products and charge fees to customers if they refuse to accept the orders. This is necessary as it can help prevent damage to your revenues and avoid future delivery refusals.
Expensive Shipping Costs
For both business owners and customers, shipping is never cheap. Generally, the cost of shipping packages may depend on some factors, like how much the packages weigh, where they’re going, and how fast they need to be delivered. Unfortunately, several businesses don’t know how to handle expensive shipping costs.
To avoid paying a high shipping cost, one of the options you can consider is to let your customers pay for it. When you charge your customers for shipping, you’ll allow them to order your items without the need to worry about your profit margins.
However, it isn’t always a good idea because some customers don’t like expensive shipping costs. So, you might want to charge your customers a flat rate and affordable shipping fee to reduce the shipping costs and avoid driving your customers away. Just make sure to consult your shipping company regarding the costs, so you and your customers won’t be surprised by the charges.
Unexpected International Fees
Unlike domestic shipping, international shipping is more expensive since the packages have to be transported in far places. In addition to that, international shipments are subject to local taxes and duties. For this reason, some businesses get rid of international shipping as much as possible. However, if you want to serve customers globally, you need to deal with international shipping.
Therefore, instead of eliminating international shipping from your business, be clear with the policies involved with it, so your customers will be aware of the possible extra fees they need to pay for international shipping.
To provide excellent customer service, it’s essential to be aware of the common business shipping challenges and the best ways to resolve them. With this in mind, you’ll be able to impress your customers by handling shipping issues with grace. Plus, you can ship your products or items with confidence. Just make sure to continue planning and improving your shipping strategies to provide the best possible shipping experience to your customers.
Jason is the Marketing Manager at a local advertising company in Australia. He moved to Australia 10 years back for his passion for advertising. Jason recently joined BFA as a volunteer writer and contributes by sharing his valuable experience and knowledge.