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How to Reduce Shipping Costs for Small Businesses

Shipping can be expensive for small businesses because they typically have smaller order volumes and fewer resources than larger companies. Additionally, many small businesses don’t have access to the same discounts from carriers as larger companies. Carriers often require a certain amount of volume before offering significant savings on shipping rates, which small businesses may be unable to fulfil.

So how can small businesses reduce shipping costs? Below we explain how small businesses can save money on small business shipping, lower overhead costs and protect profit margins!

What makes up shipping costs?
Shipping costs refer to the expenses incurred when fulfilling and delivering a package. This includes the cost of packaging materials, carrier rates, and any other charges that may arise during the process. In ecommerce, shipping costs can fluctuate depending on various factors, such as the weight and size of the items being shipped and the distance they have to travel to reach their destination.

How to reduce the weight of packages to reduce shipping costs

Weight is important when shipping packages to customers. A heavier package will cost more to ship and reduce overall profit margins, making it essential for small businesses to reduce shipping costs. There are several ways for small business owners to reduce their package weights, including:

  • Use lightweight boxes and packaging.Whenever possible, use lightweight packaging such as corrugated boxes (link). Corrugated boxes have rows of small air-filled grooves between the inner and outer layers of the box. This can reduce the overall weight of your package, allowing you to save money on shipping without sacrificing the protection of your items.
  • Choose lightweight packing materials.
    There are many types of packaging materials available that protect products while being shipped. Still, you want to keep this material as light as possible to reduce the overall cost of shipping. Loose fill biodegradable packing chips (or packing peanuts), are designed to secure goods within the shipping carton and protect your items during transit. They are perfect for filling that extra space in boxes before shipment and are a sustainable, compostable and biodegradable void-fill solution. Bubble wrap is a good lightweight option, but isn’t a sustainable product, instead, consider honeycomb paper wrap as an eco-friendly & cost-effective alternative to plastic bubble wrap cushioning.
  • Reduce the size of the packaging.
    The cost of packaging can quickly mount up and significantly reduce the potential profits from every sale. Using the right size packaging means you only have to use the needed amount. Also, your packaging materials stretch further as less is required to fill space in larger boxes. You can pack more products for the same cost as fewer products with standardised box sizes.

Utilise flat-rate shipping options
In flat-rate shipping, shipping costs are the same regardless of the weight, shape, or size of the item. The immediate benefit of flat-rate shipping is the reduction of variable costs. You know beforehand how much shipping 10 items within the specified weight range will cost. By utilising these flat rate options whenever possible, small businesses can reduce their overall shipping costs while ensuring that all packages arrive at their destination safely and on time.

Shipping costs can be a significant burden for small businesses, but there are several ways to reduce them. By using lightweight, correctly-sized boxes, such as corrugated boxes, and packaging materials, like biodegradable packing chips, you can reduce the weight of your packages while still protecting your items during transit. Additionally, utilising flat-rate shipping options whenever possible will help convert variable costs into fixed ones so that you know exactly how much it’ll cost regardless of size or shape. With these tips in mind, small business owners should have no problem finding ways to reduce their shipping costs!

If you need assistance finding the packaging to reduce the cost of your small business shipping, contact Weedon Direct today.