Are you a store owner?
If the answer to the question above is yes, then you need to increase volume order by gaining the trust of online shoppers as they navigate through your online store. The best way to achieve this is by having a detailed and transparent shipping policy displayed on your site for them to see.
A shipping policy is considered a best practice for your eCommerce or online store business. It will help you to manage your customer’s expectations and help them to make the right decision when they purchase any product.
A shipping policy will contain everything the customer needs to know about the shipping process. From the shipping options to the costs of shipping, where to ship, and what will happen when they buy restricted products.
If you need a shipping policy for small business, and you don’t know how to go about it, this article contains examples and relevant information that will get you started.
Let’s get started!
What is a Shipping Policy?
Ah! Shipping policy - an important aspect that you can’t overlook if you want to succeed in your eCommerce business. What is shipping?
A shipping policy is a detailed document that contains relevant information regarding the shipping of the items purchased by a customer. It contains details of the shipping, including the cost, method of shipping, where the item will be shipped, and more.
A shipping policy can be more detailed than others. Nevertheless, it should be accurate, concise, and easy to understand. It can also contain additional information like the exchange and return policy. With this, customers will have a clear understanding of the whole process before they buy.
Why you need a shipping policy for your eCommerce business?
There are several benefits why you should consider a shipping policy for online store. You might think it’s not necessary, but it compulsory that you have one. It will help your business flourish! Here are some reasons why your business needs a shipping policy.
Having a shipping policy will tell customers that you are reliable and transparent. From your shipping policy, they will learn about the costs of the item and when to expect the item after purchase. Aside from that, it will make your stay consistent because your customers already know what to expect and you won’t want to disappoint.
According to a survey, 47 per cent of online shoppers won’t purchase items from a store for the second time if they have no idea of where their item was either during fulfilment or delivery. You should let your customers know the processing time and shipping timeframe. With this, the customer will have an idea of what is going on with their package.
- Provide Protection for Your Company
In most cases, online store owners include more information in their shipping policy. This will cover the return and exchange policy, International shipping expectation, damages, and many more. This will give both you and your customers peace of mind.
- More Purchases and Loyal Customers
Having a shipping policy on your eCommerce site can encourage online shoppers to hit the “buy” button. When you have clear information about your shipping process, it can increase customer loyalty. This is a factor that determines if an online shopper will purchase your products.
So if your shipping policy states that packages are prepared for delivery within 1-2 business days and you offer 2-day shipping, customers who purchase an item on Thursday will expect to receive their package on Wednesday, the following week.
Essential Part of Your Shipping Policy
You don’t just design any shipping policy and you expect your customer to be satisfied. For your shipping policy to work perfectly, it needs to contain detailed and updated answers to all relevant questions.
The policy should contain relevant information like shipping costs, shipping processing time, shipping restriction, payment information, and many more. Remember, the goal is to be transparent.
- Shipping Costs
One of the essential parts of your shipping policy is the cost. Customers should know how your shipping service will cost and they will be able to calculate their total purchase cost before they start buying products on your site.
Additionally, this information becomes more vital for an international shopper who might not be eligible for a free shipping bonus. Also, international shipping fees differ depending on the retailer. So you need to be clear and transparent.
- Shipping Methods and Processing Time
Regardless of the number of shipping methods available, you should list out all the various methods and the processing time for each method.
The best way to display this information is through the use of a table - one column will contain information about the methods and the other column will display information about the processing time for each method.
- Missing or Lost Package
Packages can become a delivery exception or get lost for many reasons. And in most cases, it’s usually out of your control. But when you include information on what to do when a package got lost or missing, the customer’s mind will be at ease. You can include your contact or relevant details on how to report any missing or lost item.
- Shipping Restriction
If you have any shipping restrictions, you need to include them in your shipping policy. In some cases you might only be shipped to certain PO boxes or countries, let it reflect in your policy so that customers can know about the restriction available.
- Exchange and Return Information
When an online shopper wants to purchase goods from your store, they will be interested in knowing how you intend to handle returns and exchanges. Most online store owners will display the return and exchange information with the shipping policy. This will give customers an idea of how long they can return a product, and when they are likely to get a refund or an exchange.
- International Shipping
For the sake of international shoppers, you should also include the cost of international shipping in your policy. Who will be paying for the customs and import duties? Be clear in your communication by including the carrier that handles your foreign shipments, who take care of the charges, and extra fees, and many more.
Shipping Policy Update
How often should you update your shipping policy? We will say very often! This is because your shipping policy needs to change as your business grows. For example, if you advance from self-fulfilling orders to outsourcing-fulfilling orders, it will change your shipping timeline or processing time. As a business owner with a vision for growth, we recommend that you update your policy every six-month.
Shipping Policy Examples
Before you set up a shipping policy for your business, you should take a look at shipping policy examples from other successful eCommerce businesses. You can use it as your shipping policy template, which will help you make informed decisions.
To impress your customers, we have handpicked the best shipping policy examples from successful eCommerce businesses for you. This can act as the best shipping info template for your business.
Bean Box: Shipping Policy Example 1
Bean Box service as a subscription box that partners with top coffee roasters to deliver top-notch coffee to customers. Their FAQ section gave answers to relevant questions on how long it will take for local delivery. It also includes information about international delivery.
Here are the questions their FAQ section contains:
ERNEST ALEXANDER: Shipping Policy Example 2
YouSuper: Shipping Policy Example 3
All the shipping information examples displayed above are great examples from successful eCommerce companies. However, have it in mind that the best shipping policy is the one that fits the need of your customers and company. So when drafting your shipping policy, ensure it gives answers to question like:
- How long will it take your customers to receive their package? Does your company do daily, or weekly delivery? If your company deal with perishable goods, your customer will like to know if they will get their goods on time.
- What carrier will handle the shipping?
- Do you ship for free, or you offer a variable shipping rate or flat rate?
- Do you ship internationally or you only do local shipping?
- Do you have any shipping restrictions that you would like your customer to know?
Strikingly Shipping Policy
If you are finding it difficult to design a shipping policy on your own, Strikingly has got you covered. However, you need to first design your online store using Strikingly editor. To get started, visit our site to login into your Strikingly account.
If you don’t have an account yet, you can create an account here.
After you have created your profile, select your desired store template and start editing to fit your preference.
You can use our shipping policy feature to incentivize your customer. There are various shipping options that you can use. For instance, you can decide to add multiple shipping options with different fees for each option.
On the other hand, you can also add a free shipping option to your store. This is a great way you can use to boost your eCommerce revenue. Once you have activated this shipping policy via Strikingly, ensure you advertise it on your website.
Before you create your online store with Strikingly, ensure that you have your shipping policy ready. This is the best practice for all eCommerce businesses. With this, you will provide easy-to-understand shipping information for your customer. Ready to have your online store? Create one with Strikingly today!