All kinds of businesses exist these days. Whether you’re selling high-value items or delivering food, there are many opportunities for shipping products or selling them online. For that reason, there are now dozens of courier and postal services that solely exist for the purpose of making shipping products easier for you.
But, how do you know which courier you should use for your business? With so many options, it can be hard to choose. Below, you’ll find all the expert tips you could need to help you choose the perfect courier for your business.
As mentioned, a courier is a person or company that simply delivers products. Your high street and residential area is probably littered with delivery vans at all times of day and night! There are many recognized courier companies, while there are also lots of independent couriers who work alone or sub-contract themselves out to bigger companies.
But, a courier does far more than simply drive vans, bikes, or ship parcels. They should provide you with an end-to-end service, helping you feel safe in the knowledge that whatever you sell will always reach its intended destination. Some of the ways they do this - and why you should care - are listed below.
Couriers tend to be thought of as people in big vans delivering tens or hundreds of cardboard parcels a day. If you sell through an eCommerce platform like Amazon, then this is exactly what you should expect. A courier can handle anything from a small letter to large homeware goods.
However, couriers can also be more specialized. You may see couriers on bicycles delivering food items, flowers, or paperwork. There are so many different types of products that you could sell and deliver via a courier.
One of the first things you will probably want to look at when selecting a courier is how easy they are to use. In some cases, you will be required to download, print, and affix postage labels yourself, then hand them over to a courier. This is quite normal, but may not be your desired method. Instead, you may want a courier that will collect, store, label, or even package items for you - though these services may cost you more.
You may also not wish to commit to a certain service, price, or driver all the time. Instead, you can use a 3rd party company to help you find the best courier and price for each job. For example, you could Let Coolparcel help you ship with USPS or a huge variety of other companies. Just enter your parcel information, shipping location, and pickup point, and their site will help you find the best deal. Then, a courier will come to your desired location, grab your products, and head on their way!
In this day and age, people do not want to wait a long time for their purchased goods. With companies like Amazon often offering next-day delivery across the board, you may wish to compete with these companies and offer speedy delivery.
Speed of delivery is always important - even if you don’t want it delivered the next day - as you want to be able to honestly tell your customers how long a product will take to arrive. For this reason, you should always compare available delivery times from different couriers and how much they cost. You will likely pass the cost of fast delivery onto your customers in some form, so compare speed and price before settling on a courier service.
Whether you are selling low-cost items or expensive products, you will want to be sure that they arrive with your customer in good condition. Sadly, sometimes accidents happen or items break in transit - this is just part of e-commerce. However, it is not ideal.
If you’re worried about losing money due to damaged parcels, you should check out each courier's insurance options. Insurance prices will vary depending on the price of the products for sale, however, the cost of insuring your goods will certainly be less than the cost of replacing damaged items. If a courier offers you insurance, then they are going to take good care of your parcels to ensure they don’t have to pay out insurance claims!
Once again, the variety of products sold and shipped is massive. Choosing an appropriate courier can depend on the size and weight of the product you are selling. For example, if you are selling very small goods, a local bicycle courier could be a far more cost-effective choice than a huge shipping company. On the other hand, if you’re shipping large, high-value homeware or similarly sized items, you probably want a secure van with an experienced courier company to handle such goods.
This comes with most couriers now, but each service does it a little differently. Ideally, you should look for a courier that provides full tracking. This means that from the moment they pick it up to the minute it arrives at your customer’s home, you can keep a watchful eye on where your parcel is. This also helps you know whether a customer has received your goods, should they try to claim they didn’t.
Finally - but importantly - you should consider the customer service at each courier company. The shipping of your products is extremely important to you as it is where you make your money. If there are issues, you’d like both yourself and your customers to be able to contact the courier and have great customer service. If there is no customer service, you could be left with stress, lost parcels, and disgruntled customers.
There is a fair amount to consider, then, when looking for a courier. They should be reliable, trustworthy, and easy to get in contact with. Meanwhile, they should be reasonably priced and able to offer you insurance and guarantee that your customers will receive their goods on time. Try using an online comparison tool to find the best deals for you.