Who better to advise on the best ways to manage the rush, than businesses who have been there and done that! We spoke to a some of our business retail customers for their top tips on how to successfully prepare for, and navigate, a busy online shopping season
Offer free shipping thresholds
Unearthed Crystals offers free express shipping on domestic orders over $50, and over $100 for New Zealand customers. Their online checkout process also includes a ‘rush my order’ tickbox, and customers have the option not to sign on delivery, to improve first-time delivery.
A recent Australia Post survey found that 81% of online shoppers believe free delivery over a certain threshold is ‘very important’.
“For our customers, the most important factors are cost and timing,” says co-founder Shari Pearce. “We get great feedback on our social media channels, like ‘Oh my god, it’s so quick! I ordered yesterday and it’s here now.’ And I think that’s such a plus for the whole customer experience – it outweighs any cost.”
Rethink your returns policy
“We always offered flexible returns pre-COVID, and customers definitely appreciate being able to get a refund,” says Sarah Timmerman, CEO of clothing store Beginning Boutique.
During the pandemic, she extended the timeframe her customers had to return goods to 45 days, and ensured anything coming back to the warehouse was ‘quarantined’ for at least two days.
With online shopping booming, it’s a good time to reconsider your returns policy and determine how effective it is for your customers.
Use the right packaging…
When Booktopia invested in two new customised packaging machines, they were able to double the amount of despatches they made each day. “We can now wrap about 1,600 parcels an hour, which has reduced our backlog,” Booktopia’s Wayne Baskin, Deputy CEO and CTO explains.
The machines also allowed them to wrap orders more precisely, which has resulted in smaller parcel sizes and fewer damages.