If you are in charge of your company’s shipping, you know how important it is to reduce costs and save time. In recent years saving on shipping has been an uphill battle for many businesses because of the record level of packages being sent out and the increase in shipping rates.
We’ll go over a couple of steps you can take to reduce your overall shipping costs, and we’ll start with step number 1…rate shopping.
What is Rate Shopping?
Rate shopping is when you compare different carriers and services so that you can see your options and make the best decision for your business. This visibility to different services and carriers helps businesses better control what they spend on shipping and gives them more opportunities to save. Right now if you are only shipping with one carrier you don’t know what other options are available, one of the other major carriers might provide faster or less expensive service for what you are sending.
How Do I Start Rate Shopping?
Some businesses that only ship a handful of times a year may rate shop on their own by going to different carrier websites and seeing what services and prices are available. However, if you are a regular or semi-regular shipper this manual process might become too tiresome and time-consuming. You want a quick and convenient way to make comparisons and multi-carrier shipping software is the answer. Multi-carrier shipping software usually can be uploaded right to your desktop and links with a scale so that you can easily weigh items and get different carrier and service options. To learn more about different multi-carrier shipping options contact your Quadient rep or if you prefer to do the research on your own check out our shipping section with our full range of shipping options.
It may sound intimidating but negotiating with your shipping carriers is a great way to reduce your shipping costs and learn more about different carrier services. If you are shipping a lot of large or heavy items, or even if you are sending certain items in bulk, UPS or FedEx may have advice or service recommendations to reduce your shipping costs.
Audit your invoices to see what is driving the bulk of your expenses and start there with your shipping carriers to see what they can do to help. It is also helpful to have competitive carrier rates handy when you are negotiating, so do some research and see what you are paying when and if you ship with other carriers.
1. Audit your invoices
2. Identify any major costs, fees or surcharges you want to address
3. Know competitive carrier rates
If you are shipping more than fifty packages a year you may already know about commercial shipping rates with the USPS. These discounted shipping rates are available to all businesses big and small and they can reduce your shipping costs with the USPS by up to 40%. Businesses can get these shipping rates by barcoding their parcels with shipping software. It sounds complex but all you need is shipping software like Neoship added to your postage meter and a printer. These barcodes transmit information to the USPS so that they can transmit your packages more efficiently and they allow you to easily track your packages online.
We’ve made it simple, only three steps to start saving! If you’d like to learn more ways you can save check out our mailing and shipping blog. If you’d like to talk to a shipping specialist contact a Quadient rep today and they can help you improve your shipping strategy.