How to Make Your Shipping Process Highly Efficient
The holidays are here and experts believe e-commerce companies can expect to be busy. That’s great news for businesses, but if you oversee the department packing and shipping those orders, it’s sure to be a challenging season.
One of the keys to success when shipping volumes soar is efficiency. Even small improvements in your shipping processes can make a big difference around the holidays. Plus, what is often overlooked is the fact that the shoppers you impress with your quick turnaround time now, are more likely to be customers again in the future. Use the tips below to ensure you and your team are working at peak efficiency.
Tip #1: Choose durable cartons and good cushioning.
It is never a good idea for e-commerce companies to use flimsy shipping cartons, and this is especially true around the holidays when shipping companies are under tremendous stress and potentially not handling packages especially carefully. Corrugated cartons hold up well, provide excellent protection for your products, and help prevent the need to send replacements for damaged goods.
It is also important to choose the right carton size: too small and you increase the risk of items being crushed or the carton popping open; too big and items may shift around and break. (Not to mention the added shipping costs associated with using an over-sized carton.) After choosing the right box, you want to be sure to use the appropriate amount of a good cushioning material. Bottom line: a “Fragile” sticker on the carton is not going to protect your product. You have to be sure the package is well-prepared for a bumpy ride!
Tip #2: Get the right shipping tape to ensure cartons are properly sealed.
Water-activated tape (WAT) produces a strong, tamper-evident, single-strip seal. It is easy to apply and creates a permanent bond with the carton surface. When buying tape and other supplies, it is a good idea to buy in bulk. Doing so can help ensure you don’t run out of critical items and will likely help you save money.
Using the right shipping materials also sends a positive message about your organization and companies that purchase your products for their clients. Those companies want their holiday business gifts to arrive safely and in professional packaging.
Tip #3: Review your shipping processes from a safety perspective.
Accidents or injuries in your shipping department may be more likely during the holiday rush. Reviewing your processes with that fact in mind can help you protect your shipping team and ensure that product is not damaged during packaging and handling. Water-activated tape helps here as well, since your shipping crew won’t be using tape guns with their sharp blades and high potential for repetitive stress injuries.
One way to keep your team from having to hurry to keep up with rising volumes is to pre-pack commonly purchased items. If you do, be sure to write a description of the contents and the package weight on the carton surface so you don’t have to pause to make that determination.
Tip #4: Take steps to deter “press and grab” thefts and the time spent dealing with them.
Thieves know that packages shipped during the holiday season often contain valuable contents. A common practice is to look for cartons sealed with plastic, pressure-sensitive tape and to press down on the top of a package until the low-quality shipping tape releases. The thief can then pull out an item, and allow the carton flaps to spring back into place so that the theft goes undetected initially.
The deep bond with the carton material created by gummed tape prevents the packaging from opening in this way, making it difficult for thieves to get what they are after. As a result, you spend less time dealing with missing items and preparing replacement shipments.
Keep Up With the Holiday Rush!
By streamlining your e-commerce shipping processes and using the right packaging materials, you and your team can be highly efficient this holiday season.
Check out our free guide to determine what type of packaging tape is best for your needs.
Plus, we’re always happy to answer your questions. Contact us at your convenience.