Thursday, September 6, 2018

Is Your Ecommerce Site Ready For The Holiday Rush?

Labor Day is over, and you know what that means – it’s time to get ready for the holiday season. While your customers may not be thinking about shopping just yet, they will be in the next month. That means you only have one month to get your website ready for the busy season.

Back in July we discussed the shipping steps you should be taking for the holiday rush, but this time we’re going to focus on your website.

Let’s get started.

Figure Out Peak Shopping Periods

Before you start working on anything else, you need to dive into your website data to figure out when your busy season really begins. Look at data from the past few years and make notes on patterns. When do your sales usually spike? When does your website traffic usually spike? What was it that brought customers to your website during those specific times? Look at the browsing and buying patterns so you can make adjustments to your inventory as well as featured products, banner advertisements, and more.

Plan Sales Strategically

Now that you know the peak trends on your website, it’s time to use that information to create a sales and promotions schedule. Experiment with offering sales on historically busy days as well as slow ones. Sales can entice people to buy more, or just to buy when previously they were on the fence. You may also experiment with offering extra perks during certain peak times, such as free gift wrapping.

Start Marketing Early

You know that you have to increase your marketing during the holidays, but get an early start instead of waiting for Thanksgiving to roll around. Preview holiday promotions to your loyal customers. Create some free content, such as blog posts or how-to videos, to get customers coming to your website more often. Make sure you’re sharing product news and information relevant to the holiday shipping season. You want your customers to be thinking about shopping with you before the holidays get underway.

Upgrade Your Systems

What can you do now to make the busy holiday season easier? Now is the time to make upgrades to your systems for a smoother workflow during the holidays, and moving forward. What parts of your shipping process can be automated? Do you need to update product photos and descriptions? Maybe you want to have social media automation so you can focus on other things. Start working on these upgrades immediately so they’re ready in time for the holidays.

Test Mobile Performance

Is your website optimized for mobile? It needs to be. Not only are more and more people shopping using a mobile device, but Google is starting to prioritize mobile when it comes to search engines. If someone looks up your website while on their phone but the site is clunky on mobile, they may not bother to look again. There’s still time to make changes before the holidays.

Make it Easy For Your Customers

The holidays are a busy, hectic time for people. By making your website as easy to navigate as possible, you’re reducing stress and confusion for your customers. Make sure shop policies such as your return policy is crystal clear and easy to find. All shipping information should be readily available to customers before the checkout process. Your goal is to get your customer on your website and checked out as quickly as possible, and the easier you make your website to navigate, the more often that will happen.

Optimize Checkout

Reduce customer headaches by testing your checkout process and optimizing it. Test all of your coupon codes to make sure they ring up correctly. Analyze how many steps your customers must go through to actually make a purchase. Remember, the goal is for this to be as easy as possible for your customers, with as few website errors as possible.

Don’t Forget About Shipping Supplies!

Head to to stock up on shipping supplies for the holiday season so all your orders get shipped out on time!

Friday, August 24, 2018

Everything You Need To Know About Online Advertising

Advertising has been around for hundreds of years, but it is only in the past couple of decades that online advertising has really taken off. While online advertising may seem more complicated than putting an ad in the newspaper, it doesn’t have to be.

Whether you sell exclusively online or you offer brick-and-mortar services, it is important to consider if online advertising is right for you. If you have the budget to do some advertising online, it can be a huge boost to your profits.

Why Online?

Just about everyone is online nowadays, which means online advertising has huge potential for your business. Advertising platforms such as Google Ads make creating online advertisements relatively straightforward.

Online advertising allows your customers to take action immediately. A customer who hears your radio ad may forget your company name by the time they get to a computer, but someone who sees your advertisement online can click on it right away. That is truly what makes online advertising so remarkable.

But with so many options when it comes to online advertising, how do you decide where to put your money?

Paid Search

When people are in need of a product or service, they are likely to head to a search engine. This makes paid search advertising invaluable for your business.

Paid search is all about keywords, and your competition is using the same keywords you are. Paid search essentially acts as an auction, with the advertiser choosing maximum bids. It’s not as simple as the higher bidder gets the top search engine result, though. The quality of your ad is just as important as your maximum bid, so by crafting excellent ads you may still be able to rank well on Google.
So how do you make sure you receive an excellent ad quality score? When creating a new ad, consider these factors:

·        How relevant is the ad to the search?
·        How relevant is the ad to your ad group?
·        How relevant is the ad to the linked landing page?
·        How is the click-through-rate on the existing ad and ad group?
·        How well has your Google AdWords account done in the past?

For this reason, bidding on niche keywords can be a more effective strategy than bidding on highly competitive ones. If you are advertising for a brick-and-mortar business, you can also target audiences based on geographical data.

Paid Social

While it is still possible to generate leads organically using social media, it is getting increasingly difficult. Paid advertising on social media is a great way to get your message out there to a targeted audience. You can advertise on most of the big social media platforms, so it is important to choose the ones that are right for your audience.

That being said, each social media platform is different when it comes to advertising, which is something else you need to consider.


Facebook has the largest user base when it comes to social media platforms, which makes it an attractive option for advertisers. When you are thinking about advertising on Facebook, there are a few key factors you need to keep in mind.

·        What type of campaign are you running?
·        How aware are your customers of your brand?
·        How much customer data do you have for targeting purposes?
·        What is your budget?

Facebook has several campaign types as well as specific campaigns available within each campaign type, so it is important you choose the one that works best for your business. From there you can even choose your campaign objectives, making it easier to reach your target audience and your marketing goals.

The targeting tools Facebook offers is a huge benefit to advertising on the platform. You can target your ads based on all sorts of criteria including interests, age, website visitors, and much more.


Instagram is where you want to go if you’re targeting millennials and generation Z. Because Facebook owns Instagram, their advertising is fairly similar in terms of structure.

You can choose from a variety of ad formats, and as you can imagine, all of these formats are very visual. You can also make use of Facebook’s targeting assistance, as ads are integrated with Facebook Ad Manager. There’s even a guided creation option to help you set up your Instagram ads.

From there, creating an advertisement follows a similar formula to Facebook. The key difference is to make sure you are using hashtags.


Twitter isn’t as popular as it used to be, but that doesn’t mean you should dismiss it as an advertising platform. With only two ad options to choose from, it is far simpler than working with Facebook or Instagram.

Automatic promoted tweets is very simple; it promotes the first 10 tweets you post a day. You can also create manual Twitter ads, in which you can be selective about the tweets you promote. When creating a manual campaign, you’ll need to set your objective and budget. From there you create an ad group and create ads. You can even choose where you want these ads to appear on Twitter.

While not as advanced as Facebook and Instagram, you still have a fair amount of targeting options to choose from on Twitter so your ads are reaching the right audience.

But Wait, There’s More

There are plenty of other types of advertisements available for you to look into. Display ads, Youtube ads, and native advertising are just three examples of the many advertising opportunities out there.
If you’re just getting started with online advertising though, paid search and paid social ads are likely what you will be working with, especially with a limited budget. Don’t be afraid to dig deeper into online advertising and experiment.

What’s your favorite platform for online advertising? Let us know!

Wednesday, August 15, 2018

Meeting Customer Shipping Expectations

Customers have high expectations when it comes to the shipping of their orders. Do you know what the biggest customer demands are? And are you meeting them? We’ve compiled a list of the leading customer demands when it comes to ecommerce and how you can be sure to deliver.

Expectation: Fast Delivery

Solution: At the bare minimum, you must make sure to meet the deadlines you’ve set for yourself on your website. If you state that products will arrive one week after an order has been placed, you need to be sure that the products will arrive within that one week timeframe.

But ideally, your products will be in your customer’s hands within several days of a product being ordered. Aim for faster delivery times, and aim to have your product arrive faster than a customer expects. They’ll be pleasantly surprised to get your product early.

Expectation: Easy Product Tracking

Solution: If most of your tracking systems are manual, now is the time to update your supply chain. Think about your shipping process and consider when during the process customers are able to track their order.

The goal is to offer updated shipping information regularly. This may include emailing the customer, texting them, or creating landing pages where customers can easily track the status of their order. If nothing else, you’ll want to set up a process so that a customer is emailed when their item ships.

Expectation: Multiple Shipping Options

Solution: Your customers are busy people, and they won’t always be home to collect parcels that are being delivered. When it comes to more expensive parcels in particular, customers want the opportunity to have more control over the arrival times and days.

It’s easy enough to offer multiple shipping options, whether that is faster delivery times or delivery of parcels on specific days such as on weekends or after typical work hours. Get an idea of what your customers want so you can offer the options they’re looking for.

Expectation: Fair Return Policy

Solution: Customers are more likely to spend their money online when returns are easy to make and ideally, free. There are several things you can do about this to keep customers shopping and ultimately, buying. You want to make sure your return policy is clear and easy to find. You also want to make it as easy as possible for customers to return an item. Nothing frustrates a customer more than being unhappy with a product then having to jump through hoops to get their money back.

We wrote in depth about return practices HERE, so take a look for more details.

Expectation: Free Shipping

Solution: Customers love free shipping, and your brand loyalty will grow when you offer free shipping. It may seem expensive, but there are a few ways you can offer free shipping without losing money.

We did an entire blog post on this subject, which you can find HERE.

Expectation: Products Arrive Safely

Solution: Properly package your products before sending them to your customers. By properly packaging your items with the correct shipping supplies, you can be reasonably sure your products will arrive safely.

Shop for quality shipping products that will get your items safely to their destination, helping you to gain loyal customers.

Wednesday, August 8, 2018

Easy Ways To Build Customer Trust

If you do most of your business online, or even all of it, gaining the trust of your customers takes a little bit of extra work. When it comes to ecommerce, every small detail either helps or hurts when it comes to building trust with your customers. Product descriptions, photos, reviews, and social media posts will all have an impact on if your customer sees you as a trustworthy brand or not.

It isn’t enough to know you are running a legitimate operation; you have to assure your customers that your business and your products can be trusted. The good news is that once you start using the following strategies, it’s not too hard!

Use Good Branding Techniques

Having a cohesive style across your company website, social media, and printed materials is one of the easiest and most effective ways to build trust with your customer base.

Consistent, strong branding shows customers that you have put a lot of work and thought into your company. It also shows that your company has a clear story to tell and value to add to people’s lives. The story of your brand should permeate every aspect of your shop, from your company logo to your product descriptions. Consistency here is key.

To learn more about how to create a successful branding strategy, read our Branding Guide.

Update Frequently

By updating frequently you show customers you’re here to stay. This doesn’t mean you have to redesign your entire website every few months, but it does mean you should be regularly updating banners, social media copy, and your product listings to keep content fresh.

If a customer is interested in your product and heads to Facebook to look at your profile, it doesn’t look good if there haven’t been any updates for over a month. This gives the appearance that you aren’t staying up-to-date on trends and that you aren’t concerned with providing your customers with updated information.

We’re constantly monitoring our website and have a daily deal that we post about on our Facebook page.

Showcase Positive Reviews

Inspire trust from potential customers by showcasing positive reviews from past customers. You worked hard to get those positive reviews, so make sure you use them to your advantage. When customers see that others have had a positive experience shopping with you, it gives them confidence in shopping from you as well.

We have an entire Customer Testimonials page on our website for this very reason!

Interact With Your Customers

If you get a question or comment from a customer, don’t ignore it or put off answering. Quick response times and interactions with customers is an easy way to show that you value customer concerns and opinions.

By interacting with customers regularly, you’re also showing that your business is active. Personal interactions are also more likely to build a loyal customer base. People like feeling as if they are special, so make them special!

Provide Clear, Informative Product Photos & Copy

Short, vague descriptions and blurry photos are easy ways to turn customers away from your website. It makes your business look scammy and lazy. That’s why it is so important that you take the time to make each product page as nice as you can.

Use crisp photography that showcases your product from a variety of angles. Your product descriptions should clearly state the product features, dimensions, and any other pertinent information that customers will be looking for.

Your photos and copy should be clean and professional across your entire website. That goes for banners, FAQ pages, About sections, and every other page on your website.

Now that you know how to build customer trust, don’t forget to deliver with high quality shipping supplies so your customer’s orders arrive undamaged!

Thursday, August 2, 2018

Are You Spending Too Much On Shipping?

No matter how long you’ve been in business, there’s a good chance you’re spending more than you have to on shipping costs. Your shipping costs can have a huge impact on your bottom line. By reducing shipping expenses, your company will gain additional revenue, and it isn’t even that hard.

Here’s how to know if you’re spending too much on your shipping costs.

1. You Aren’t Consolidating

Sending large shipments can get expensive, but by consolidating your shipments you can save a lot of money. Work with a consolidating freight service to find the best way to do this. By doing this for larger, heavier orders, you can save a huge amount of money, and so can your customer!

2. You Aren’t Tracking Carrier Performance

By tracking the costs and services of your carrier, you can actually save a lot of money. Your carrier may be costing you more than you even realized. Late deliveries, damaged products, and unexpected fees can quickly add up to more than you expected.

When tracking carrier performance you’ll want to pay close attention to:

·        Is the carrier meeting pickup and delivery times?
·        Are you being charged non-essential fees?
·        How does the carrier respond to customer feedback?
·        What do your customers have to say about their deliveries?

3. You’re Not Negotiating For Discounts

Did you know that carriers will often provide discounts to customers who ship frequently and in high volumes? Browse a variety of carriers to see who can offer you the best price. From there, you can negotiate with your preferred carrier to see if they can match the rate or give you a discount. And don’t forget, you don’t need to stick to just one carrier. You can always branch out if a specific shipment will be cheaper through a different carrier.

4. You Aren’t Being Strategic With Your Shipping Supplies

The shipping supplies you’re using can either make or break you when it comes to shipping costs. As a rule of thumb, you should try to sue the smallest box you can to package your products to reduce costs. You also want to be sure to properly pack products with void fill and other cushioning items so your product won’t arrive damaged.

It’s also smart to buy your shipping supplies in bulk, which costs more upfront but gives you big discounts. offers bulk pricing on all products, so keep that in mind next time you’re looking for packaging products.

5. You Aren’t Buying Postage Online

You can get some nice discounts when you pay for your postage online rather than taking your packages directly to the USPS. Staffing a Post Office is expensive, so the USPS offers discounts as an incentive to buy postage online. If you use the USPS for a lot of your shipping, this is an important tip to keep in mind.

Don’t let these shipping mistakes happen to you!

Tuesday, July 24, 2018

Start Preparing For Holiday Shipping This Summer

Don’t let yourself get complacent about the holidays just because it’s summer! The Christmas season may not yet be on your mind, but when it comes to your business, it should be. Four months from now you’ll be in the middle of the busiest time of the year.

By starting to prepare for the holidays now, you’ll save yourself a lot of stress down the line.
Here are the steps you can take now to be ready to ship products during the holidays.

1. Consider Your Inventory

Now is the time to place your orders so you have the products you need for the holidays in stock and ready to ship. Focus on stocking up on your best sellers. If they’re usually your best sellers, it is likely they will be your best sellers during the holidays. Make sure you have enough inventory!

2. Test Your Website

You have months to make changes to your website so it runs smoothly for your customers during the holiday rush. Websites that run poorly tend to cause customers to shop elsewhere.

Websites that load slowly are one of the biggest reasons why customers become frustrated by a website. Test website loading speeds using software tools to ensure everything is running smoothly. You also want to make sure your product images and copy are updated and that the website is easy to navigate.

3. Stock Up On Shipping Supplies

You need more than a healthy inventory of products; you also need plenty of shipping supplies. Make sure you have a decent stock of corrugated boxes, bubble & foam wrap, tape, poly bags, and everything else you need to properly pack and ship.   

4. Examine Shipping More Closely

Timing is everything during the holiday season, so ensuring that your packages arrive to their destination in a timely manner is extremely important.

Think about your shipping providers. Have they been reliable? Do you regularly get complaints? Could your shipping options and returns policy be updated to make your customers happier? If you’re thinking about making changes, now is the time to get started.

5. Start Hiring Extra Help

If you know your current staff can’t keep up with sales volume during the holidays it’s time to think about hiring temporary workers. We recommend hiring your temporary staff in October so you have time to train new employees before it gets busy.

How are you preparing for the holidays?

Wednesday, July 18, 2018

How To Develop Your Brand In 5 Steps

Your brand identity is extremely important, whether you’re a large corporation or a small startup. A successful brand invokes positive feelings. Your brand is your company’s story, its values, and its products. Without a strong brand you can easily be lost in the shuffle.

Your brand is what draws in new customers and keeps current customers loyal. You want your branding to be consistent, from your social media presence to your photography. And we’re here to help you do that.

It may sound a bit overwhelming, but we’re making this easy for you with just 5 steps.

1.      Think About Your Products

Think about your products carefully. So much of your brand gets built simply because of the items you sell. There are a few questions you’ll want to ask yourself to help you define your brand:
·        Why are you selling the products?
·        Why not something else instead?
·        How do your products help customers with their problems?
·        What makes your product unique?
·        What words would you use to describe your products?

By answering these questions, you’ve given yourself the framework you need to start building your brand.

2.      Consider Design Aesthetics

Your design needs to be consistent across all channels. The colors and fonts you use will build associations about your brand, so think about design carefully. Consider the style of your brand – is it more formal, or more casual? These types of questions will help you determine the design pallet you use for your brand.

What colors represent your brand’s personality? Your color pallet can have a huge influence on the way your brand is viewed. When working with typography, make sure you’re choosing fonts that are easy to read, but still represent the tone of your brand. Your photography should also reflect your brand’s color pallet.

You should use all of these elements when it comes to designing your company logo. This logo should be creative but easy to understand and memorable.

3.      Build A Brand Voice

Your brand voice will determine the tone of the copy you use on your website, social media accounts, and with customers.

By now you’ve already figured out the personality of your company, and that will dictate the tone of your brand. Your social media posts shouldn’t be written in a friendly, casual manner if all the content of your website is professional and technical. Once you choose a brand voice you need to stick with it across all channels.

Having a consistent brand voice is extremely important when it comes to connecting with your customers.

4.      Think About Brand Channels

How do you reach your audience? The platforms and physical locations where you reach consumers makes up your brand channels. You may have a physical storefront, conduct business exclusively online, or a mix of both. Your branding needs to be visible across all of these channels to help you create a consistent message.

Your branding aesthetics should be clear across your website banners, social media banners and posts, business cards, physical promotional materials, your storefront, and anywhere else your brand is visible.

Think about how different channels can share different aspects of your brand. Feature image galleries and blog posts on your website to give your audience an in-depth look at your company. Social media allows you to interact directly with customers and present your products in a way that makes the products about your customer, and not about your business. Advertising through social media and Google is another channel that needs to adhere to your brand standards. If you have a physical storefront, train your staff to interact with customers according to brand guidelines.

5.      Don’t Forget Packaging & Promotional Materials

Your branding doesn’t stop after a customer has purchased products from you. You also need to consider the packaging you choose. Do you want to promote eco-friendly values? You can do that with eco-friendly packaging. Do your customers want extra protection for products during shipping, or are they more minimalistic? These are the types of questions that should influence your package branding.

Easy ways you can personalize your packaging to reflect your brand includes:

·        Labels
·        Stickers
·        Fabric Labels
·        Tags
·        Flyers/Notes

You may also consider creating custom packaging, but that can get very expensive very quickly. Adding little touches inside your packaging materials is just as effective and less expensive.

In Conclusion

Building a brand can take a lot of hard work, but it’s easier to get started than you think. By starting with these 5 steps you’ll be well on your way to creating a memorable brand that your customers will love.

Wednesday, July 11, 2018

Retain Customers With The Best Return Practices

There’s no way around returns. The product your customer purchased may not fit, may not be exactly what they wanted, or may arrive damaged. No matter the reason for the return, it is important you use the best return practices you can to retain that customer in the future.

Retaining customers is much more inexpensive than gaining new ones, so even if you have to take a loss it is important you try to retain each customer’s business. If your return policy causes your customers grief not only will you lose their business, you will lose business due to their negative feedback.

A hassle-free return policy is an easy way for your business to keep customers happy and loyal. While return fraud is a real concern and absorbing shipping costs can be expensive, these are things you can work around in your return policy.

Instead of thinking of returns as a loss of time and money, think of them as an opportunity for excellent customer service that will bring your customers back again and again.

Here’s how.

Have A Clear, Easy To Understand Return Policy

Your customers are already dissatisfied with your product, so don’t irritate them with a policy that is difficult to find or understand. Keep the language of your return policy simple and easy to skim.
For example, take a look at the Return Policy.

We have a single landing page that clearly explains our return policy, including an “Important Notes” section that states requirements for returns. Our language is free of legal jargon so it is easy for our customers to understand just by scanning.

Include Return Information In The Packaging

Making it more difficult for customers to return products they are unhappy with is shortsighted. When finding return information is challenging, customers become annoyed and more likely to avoid your business in the future.

Including a simple note with your packaging makes it easy for customers to find the information they need. Your customers will appreciate not needing to search the website for your return information. Don’t worry; including the information in the packaging will not make customers more likely to return it.

Don’t Begrudge Customers For Returns

It may be true that the customer is the one who broke your product or didn’t read the description closely enough, but if you resist taking the return it will hurt you in the long run.

Not only will it infuriate your customers, it will waste a great deal of time and you may lose that customer forever. If the experience is bad enough, that customer may leave negative feedback that other customers will see, or tell their loved ones about their negative experience losing you more customers. Returns are a part of any business, so make sure to provide excellent customer service to try and retain the customer. In fact, providing customers with an excellent return experience can gain a lot of customer loyalty.

Ask Customers For Feedback

Ask customers why they are making the return. While this idea seems very straightforward, you can use this feedback to make big changes so you have fewer returns in the future.

By tracking feedback patterns you will get a better idea of why a return was made. If a lot of products are returned due to damage, for example, you may not be packaging your products correctly. If customers state the product doesn’t meet the description, it may be time to update your product copy and photographs. Returns are an excellent opportunity for you to make improvements to your business.

Keep Customers Updated

There’s nothing more infuriating than waiting for your money to be returned to you, or for a replacement product to arrive. Luckily it is easy enough to update customers about the state of their returns via email or phone.

Inform customers when you receive the returned item(s) and how long it will take for the replacement item to arrive or for the money to show in their account. Your customers will be glad they don’t need to keep calling your business for this information.

Cover Return Shipping, If You Can

Depending on the size of your business you may not be able to afford to cover return shipping, but customers will appreciate it if you can.

Customers may be irritated at being forced to pay return shipping costs. As a compromise, you may consider covering return shipping for specific situations, such as a damaged product.

What return practices are you using for your business? What has worked and what hasn’t?

Friday, July 6, 2018

5 Marketing Mistakes and How To Fix Them

Whether you’re a large corporation or a small business, you are doing marketing of some kind. If you aren’t seeing the return on your investment you were expecting, it’s possible you’ve made some marketing mistakes along the way.

Luckily it’s not too difficult to change these marketing blunders into successes.

Mistake 1: Using Too Many Social Media Platforms

For the most part, all businesses know they need to be active on at least one social media platform. The problem is when companies decide to take on too many social media platforms. While it makes sense on the surface to sign up for every platform you can, that may be a poor choice. Unless you’re a large corporation you likely don’t have the resources to churn out amazing content for each platform on a daily basis.

Instead, focus on the social media platforms your customers are most likely to be using. Check your analytics to see what platforms are most worthy of your efforts. Once you know that, focus on producing quality content for those couple platforms.

Mistake 2: You Aren’t Paying Attention to Your Competitors

Look at their marketing strategies. What are they doing? What tactics do they try and never do again? What tactics get them a lot of customer engagement? Read their blog, watch them on social media, and sign up for their newsletter. This is a very easy way to see how your direct competition is interacting with your customers.

You can take what they’re doing well and do it better, and learn from the mistakes they make so you don’t make them yourself.

Mistake 3: Ignoring Current Customers

It’s easy to get too focused on chasing leads and attracting new customers. While this is an important part of your marketing strategy, your goal shouldn’t be to get a one-time sale from new customers, but to get customers to stick around.

Make sure you stay in touch with your current customers, both those who have only purchased from you once and those that have been buying from you regularly. Email marketing is the easiest way to accomplish this, but no matter what you do make sure you have a marketing plan in place for these existing customers.

Mistake 4: Not Using a Call to Action

You create a great piece of content and publish it to your blog or a social media platform. But then what? Without a call to action, customers will likely read the content and move on. You want to turn those readers into buyers, and to do that you need to use a call to action.

What is the purpose of the piece of content you’ve created? You may want to promote a certain product, direct customers to a landing page, or generate more traffic across your blog. Whatever it is, there needs to be a call to action so your customers will take that next step. Even better, you can use a call to action button so customers simply have to click and go.

Mistake 5: Not Thinking Like Your Customer

You may think the details about your product are obvious, but they likely aren’t to your customer. You also want to make sure to write in a language your customers are going to understand. Avoid jargon and write with a tone that your audience will relate to.

Your customer should be in your mind every time you write a blog post, email, or product description. Don’t write something you like, write something the customer will like.

Never miss an article or sale by liking our page on Facebook!

Tuesday, June 26, 2018

Keep Customers Happy With Excellent Parcel Delivery

Your job isn’t over once you’ve packaged a product and sent it to your customers. You may have the perfect customer service, efficient and professional packaging, and an amazing product, but customers can still leave you angry reviews because of the delivery of your parcel.

This means that even if the carrier is to blame you’ll be the one to suffer the negative feedback. Luckily there are ways you can counteract this. These seven tips will help keep your customers happy with your brand, even if something goes wrong.

Schedule delivery times with your customers so your parcels aren’t left sitting on their doorstep in the elements and vulnerable to thieves. Of course this will depend on the carrier you are using. If you can offer a specific delivery time, give customers the option, especially for more expensive products.

Provide delivery windows if you can’t schedule a specific time. Even if you can’t guarantee delivery on a specific date, you can often provide a delivery window of several hours.

Allow customers to request specifics when it comes to parcel delivery. Customers can leave instructions about where they would like parcels left if they are not home. This will give your customers more control over the delivery process and prevents costly mistakes.

Send tracking details over the course of the delivery. Inform customers of when a parcel ships, when it arrives, and maybe even while the parcel is in transit.

Use preferred communication mediums for each customer. Give them the option to receive updates on their parcel via email, text message, or by utilizing a company tracking landing page. Your customers will appreciate being notified about their order, and giving them the option for how to receive those notifications will make you stand out.

Offer a tracking page that customers can visit at any point during the delivery process. Having this page means you’ll field less questions from customers about where their parcel is. Additionally, by creating a branded tracking page you are encouraging further engagement with your customers. It’s a great place to cross sell as well.

Provide excellent customer service, especially if something goes wrong. It may not be your fault something went wrong with the delivery of your products, but it isn’t the customer’s fault either. Be understanding and helpful so that your customers still view you in a positive light.

Tuesday, June 19, 2018

How To Offer Free Shipping Without Losing Money

You have amazing products, you know exactly how to package and ship your products, and you have steady sales from loyal customers. But even loyal customers keep their eyes out for better deals across the internet. The cost of shipping can make a huge impact on if a customer ultimately buys from you or not.

Unexpected shipping costs are the number one reason why shopping carts get abandoned during a transaction. You may not be able to offer free shipping all the time, but using free shipping as a promotion is a great way to get a spike in sales.

Your goal is to not only get more sales, but to show customers why they should stick around and shop with you in the future. Take these steps to update your website so it’s looking its best before you run your successful free shipping promotion.

Is Free Shipping A Real Thing?

Of course, no shipping service is going to ship your products for free, so when offering a free shipping promotion you’re going to have to absorb the costs.

The first thing you need to do is to calculate if a free shipping promotion will work for your company. The sad truth is it may not. Some companies simply will not be able to offer free shipping to customers without it negatively impacting their profit margins. If you’re considering offering free shipping as a promotion, you may want to reconsider if:

·        You sell large and heavy products, which are much more expensive to ship.
·        Most of your orders are shipped internationally, or to Alaska and Hawaii.
·        You have a low profit margin on many of your products.

For the rest of you, free shipping will likely help to boost your sales because you aren’t forced to absorb extremely high shipping costs. Here are some of the ways you can run your free shipping promotion without losing money.

1.      Set A Minimum Order Requirement

Setting a minimum order for customers to receive free shipping is an excellent way to boost sales, get customers to browse more of your products, and reduces the risk of you losing money during a free shipping promotion. Think about your average order size. The goal is to have customers spend more than that to get the free shipping. Your minimum threshold should be 10% to 15% higher than the average order on your website.

2.      Offer Free Shipping To The 48 Contiguous States

An easy way to avoid absorbing high shipping costs is to only offer the promotion to residents of the 48 contiguous states. You must make sure that his caveat is extremely clear. Don’t simply put it in the fine print, because this could lead to angry customers if they get to the end of the purchase and discover they have to pay shipping.

3.      Increase The Prices On Your Products

This could be a risky move depending on how many loyal customers you have. We don’t recommend increasing your prices by the full shipping cost, but adding a dollar or two to the product price can help to offset the cost of you covering the shipping.

4.      Adjust Your Return Policy

This is something you can add to the fine print of your free shipping offer. When customers return items that you’ve offered free shipping on, you’re taking a big financial hit since you paid to package and ship the product to the customer. State that items returned during the free shipping promotion are subject to a “restocking” fee equal to the amount it cost to ship the customer the product.

5.       Offer Free Shipping On Select Items

If you’re worried that free shipping isn’t feasible for everything on your website, consider offering free shipping on specific product categories that already give you a higher profit margin. By offering free shipping for specific types of products you can guarantee that you can absorb the shipping costs while still making a profit.

Tuesday, June 12, 2018

How To Properly Pack Electronics

Electronics are expensive, fragile, and highly coveted. If you package your electronic products just slightly incorrectly, you could be out hundreds of dollars when they arrive damaged in customers’ hands. We think that proper packaging is always important, but it’s especially important for electronics.

Shipping electronics doesn’t have to be hard. Once you have a procedure down for packaging these fragile items you’ll never have to worry about damaged electronics again.

1.      Give Extra Care to Batteries. Lithium-ion batteries store a lot of power. Temperature changes, especially during shipping, can create a high charge of static electricity. Both static electricity and excessive heat can cause your battery to short-circuit, which can lead to fire. Keep batteries covered with a non-conductive material to stop this from happening.

2.      Separate Equipment Into Multiple Pieces. This includes cords. Not only does this reduce the risk of damage to your components, but it makes your shipment more organized. Label each piece to make it easier for your customer to find what they need when they are unpacking your shipment. Bundle up cords so they take up less space. If you have small parts, make sure they are kept in their own, sealed packaging.

Try: Poly Bags

3.      Use Bubble Wrap For Your Larger Electronic Components. We recommend taping the bubble wrap in place to keep your larger electronic components more secure. You don’t want to place a printer in a box without any cushioning. Wrap these components in at least two layers of bubble wrap.

4.      Use Void Fill. Don’t be conservative. If your electronics have too much room in the corrugated carton to move around, you’re taking a huge risk. When placing your products in the box start with a layer of loose fill before you start putting anything inside. Continue to layer in the rest of your electronic parts among the loose fill. Make sure to fill your box to the top with the loose fill. If when you shake the box you can hear movement, you need more void fill.

5.      Seal Your Box With High Quality Tape. Consider how strong the tape is and how it will stand up to water and different temperatures. There’s a lot of different types of tape, and the one you choose should depend on the conditions under which your package will ship.

6.      Consider Double Boxing Your Electronics. While not always necessary, this gives your electronics an extra layer of protection. The second box should be about 2 inches larger than your original box. Place your original box inside the second box, making sure to fill up the extra space with more loose fill. Seal this box with tape.

One last tip; be sure to invest in quality shipping supplies from trusted sources such as to ensure you have the right packaging strategy and the right packaging supplies.

Wednesday, June 6, 2018

Use the Desire for Experience to Your Advantage

A lot has changed in the world over the past couple of decades. Selling used to be a fairly straightforward venture, with a business selling their product and people buying it. But as the years go by, more and more people want to be shopping from responsible companies, small businesses, and companies that have a voice.

As millennials and generation Z get more buying power, brands need to be ready to adjust their marketing strategies to attract new customers. Research has shown that millennials in particular value experiences over goods. So, how can you use this knowledge to get customers to purchase your products?

If you think about experiences, you likely think about big vacations and adventures, but experiences are actually much simpler than that. Going out to dinner, getting drinks with friends, and taking a walk in town all can fall under the term “experiences”.

So, how can you mix this into your marketing strategy?

Use Social Proof

In the era of social media, more and more people are turning to friends for recommendations when it comes to purchases. Consumers are also checking reviews and social media platforms before making a decision.

By offering social proof, you’ll show consumers that your brand and products can be trusted, because people are already talking about them on social media.

Add faces to reviews. Share stories from consumers about how your product changed their lives. Share glowing reviews on your social media channels and in email blasts.

You can often get these reviews simply by asking your customers for them.

Utilizing user generated content is another great way to create social proof. Ask your customers to share photos of them using your product. This works particularly well if you make it part of a contest. The more social proof your brand has, the better the sales will be.

Use Social Media

This is different than generating social proof. Utilizing social media to create an experience for your customers is one of the best strategies you can implement.

The first way to do this is simply to interact with your customers. Fostering engagement with your customers will make them more satisfied with the experience of shopping with you. Reply to comments and answer messages. It shows your customers that you care about them, and leaves them with a positive idea of your company in their mind long after the interaction is over.

You should also aim to create content that drives customer engagement. Not only does this increase your organic reach, but today’s consumers love the ability to interact. Try creating a poll, asking consumers to share photos, or discuss a topic in the comments of your posts.

Create Memories

Memories are powerful when it comes to marketing. By creating positive memories for your customer, you are more likely to gain their loyalty. There are plenty of ways you can create memories for your customers that don’t rely on only your products.

You may choose to host events. Free classes, webinars, workshops, and special sales are excellent events that you can hold in-person or online to get people’s attention. When they think back on your brand they won’t think only of your product, but how your event helped them or created a positive experience for them.

Tell a Story

Telling stories can move people in ways that simple advertising cannot. By using stories you can form a deeper connection with your audience. You can use stories to humanize your brand. Find ways to inspire using your product, then craft a story about it.

The story can be as simple as you featuring an image of your product in use with a bit of copy. It’s all about showing how your product or service is creating stories and being a part of people’s lives.

What are you doing to create experiences for your customer? Let us know in the comments!

Thursday, May 31, 2018

The Best Packaging For Shipping ________?

It’s happened to you before – you’re looking at your orders and ready to buy more packaging supplies, but you still aren’t sure what materials are best for your products.

What are the best packaging materials for shipping books? Should I mail jewelry in a poly bag or a corrugated mailer? If this product is heavy can it only be sent in a corrugated box?

We’re here to help.


Books face some tough challenges during shipping. You want your books to arrive free of cuts and bends. You have to ensure books won’t interact with liquids. Some books are extremely valuable and will require extra packaging.

The most important thing to keep in mind when shipping books is that you don’t want any extra space in your packaging. Extra space means the book can move around and may get damaged, which leaves you with a dissatisfied customer.


With so many online-only options and big stores building an online presence, clothes are being shipped out more than ever. With so much competition the last thing you want is to get an angry customer and a demand for a refund because their item arrived in poor condition.

Luckily clothing is rarely fragile and having extra space in your packaging is usually alright. Clothing is also fairly inexpensive to ship compared to other types of products. Usually a simple poly mailer will do, which will keep clothing safe from the elements such as rain.


Jewelry is often small, often valuable, and often easy to damage in shipping if not packaged correctly. Luckily shipping jewelry correctly can be inexpensive and easy.

You can ship your jewelry in nothing more than a bubble mailer or envelope if you use bubble wrap to wrap your product. Whether you’re placing your jewelry item in a bag, box, or bubble wrap before sending it off in a mailer, make sure it is well cushioned.


Electronics are one of those items that make everyone nervous when it comes to shipping. They’re fragile and usually expensive, so packaging them correctly is extremely important.

You have to protect your electronics from a lot of things. For larger electronics we recommend shipping your product in two boxes for added protection. As with just about any product, eliminate extra space in your packaging materials so the product cannot move around. Electronic accessories should be wrapped separately.

Parts & Tools

Whether you’re shipping car parts or tool sets, these heavy items require special care when it comes to packaging and shipping. There is no way around this one – you’ll have to invest in double or triple wall boxes to ensure your packaging materials have the strength to hold your products.

Make sure to keep extra space to a minimum, not just to protect your products but because heavy items can cause damage to your corrugated box if it moves around too much while in transit.


There are two major things you want to protect these items from during shipping. The first thing you’ll need to keep in mind is water; no one wants their photos to arrive with water damage! Of course the more important safety concern you should have for your product is making sure it does not get bent.

You’ll want to use rigid packaging materials that allow your items to ship flat. Luckily this means your shipment won’t be too expensive.

Everything Else

Okay, not literally everything else, but eCommerce means that just about anything can be sold online. A lot of products are going to be too large for bubble mailers and poly mailers. When in doubt, the reliable corrugated box is always a great option for shipping.