Customer expectations are expanding, and to keep up with this need, businesses are hiring third-party courier companies to deliver their products on time. However, small businesses that try to match the delivery speeds of their competition also have to deal with a high price tag.
Or, do they? When implemented strategically with the right national shipping company, you can drive more sales to your website, prevent cart abandonment, and keep your customers happy.
How to Find the Right National Courier For Your Business
The buyer’s journey doesn’t end on the checkout screen; it stays on course up until the point of delivery. You’ll need the right nationwide courier service to impress your state-wide customers.
1. Know Your Customer’s First
Before engaging with delivery companies, you need to understand your own requirements and your customer’s priorities. If you’re attracting more and more out-of-state customers, you already know you need a national courier, but the specific company you’ll need will depend.
While researching, consider if your customers will pay for fast delivery, the number of products you ship each week/month, and your competition to determine the right courier for you. Pricing for courier companies varies greatly depending on the type of services you need.
2. Delivery Speed and Costs
36% of US online shoppers opted for same-day delivery for purchases, but most retailers don’t offer this feature. It’s likely your buyers will use the same-day shipping option if it’s available, even if they have to pay a premium. At the very least, you should try to offer two-day shipping.
However, fast shipping from your courier will also cost you a pretty penny, and you can’t pass all of that cost to the consumer. At the same time, the cheapest provider isn’t always the best. It’s better to prioritize quality service over low costs to encourage customer loyalty and sales value.
3. Delivery Range and Tracking
Any courier service that doesn’t have a national delivery range shouldn’t be considered. Since you’re already expanding to different states, find a company that ships across the US, not just to a select few states (or locations in these states), to keep up with your current business growth.
Customers want to buy from businesses that allow them to track their packages, but this feature becomes necessary across state lines. When a package travels a longer distance, there are more opportunities for something to go wrong. A tracking number will offer peace of mind.
4. Customer Service (Helpfulness/Friendliness)
Even in instances of contactless delivery, couriers will interact with your customers at some point, so you’ll want to perform background checks before hiring them. Look at customer review websites like Trustpilot and Google, and see how they respond to negative criticism.
If your courier of choice has received a decent amount of positive reviews and can perform conflict resolution tactics on negative reviews, call up the company. Ask about their insurance options and when you can reach them if you have a problem. Make a note of their friendliness.
5. Courier Specialization
Some products, like perishables or medical supplies, require a specialized shipping solution. When it comes to these items, even the smallest error could have long-lasting consequences for your brand. That’s why It’s crucial to find a courier that has a specific expertise if you need it.
Consider specialty conditions for your items, such as shipping times, insulated packaging, temperature, and pricing. For medical couriers, you need to ensure the drivers are HIPAA certified. eCommerce businesses may want a courier that offers API integration with their site.