One of the biggest issues that an ecommerce startup faces at the start of their journey is finding a proper shipping provider as if your business is based online, and it is highly unlikely that you have your own shipping system ready.
And for that reason, many ecommerce websites follow a simple method of integrating a third-party shipping provider in their ranks. And if you are considering doing the same, then follow along because, in this article, we will break down the top 3 shipping providers to integrate into your ecommerce business.
Qualities of a Good Shipping Provider
Now before diving into our top picks, we should point out that there are quite a few factors that differentiate a good shipping provider from an average one. Now, you need to get all of these factors checked before deciding upon a shipping provider for your ecommerce start-up. And these factors are:
The first and probably the most important factor for deciding a shipping provider for your ecommerce solutions is pricing and how it affects your overall revenue. There are many shipping services that cost a fortune to be in a length contract with, while there are that come in with really cheap pricing.
But the quality of overall service also depends on the pricing, so if you go for a very cheap one, then chances are you will regret that decision in the long run. But on the other hand, if you pick away too costly service, then you might be wasting money which could’ve been used for another improvement of your business.
So, the optimal choice is to pay a standard price that doesn’t break your bank but at the same time provides your customers the satisfaction that they deserve.
The next factor that you need to keep in mind is what services do the shipping provider provides. And depending on the answer, your whole plan can be changed. It is good to pick a shipping provider who provides services that will be beneficial for you.
For example, if your ecommerce store’s main niche is small products that don’t even take a quarter of space in a truck, then picking a shipping service provider that offers freight loads isn’t the best option for you, even though you work with overseas clients.
This also works to your benefit. For example: if your ecommerce services deal with paintings and your shipping providers offer sensitive item trading services, then you don’t have to pay extra for that feature.
So, make sure to always check what type of services comes along with your shipping service provider.
This is quite critical to building trust with your shipping provider. Because if you don’t know how reliable your shipping provider is, then there will always be a lingering sense of doubt that will not only affect your peace of mind but also will lead to a rocky relationship with the transporters.
A good way to build be sure of a shipping provider’s reliability is to check in with their previous clients, visiting neutral reviews, and finding out the pros and cons. Also, reliability and trust build over time, so if you find out the transporter for your goods can do their job, then share a bit of trust for them.
Use of Modern Technology
Your shipping provider can’t be using technologies and software from the previous decade. Shipping services that provide the latest technology and software should be your pick. Because one thing that online shopping is famous for is giving the customers full control & information of their products, especially when they are on a shipping route.
So, companies that offer real-time tracking, product monitoring, pick-up timer, and all the other latest goods should be on your priority list when picking a shipping provider to integrate with your ecommerce business. Unless your customers can’t know the exact details of their products using your ecommerce mobile app, you will lose a good chunk of potential buyers.
Warehouse and Safety
Safety is another key aspect of choosing the perfect shipping provider for your ecommerce business. Because unless the shipping provider can ensure 100% safety on delivery, then that party shouldn’t even be considered to be a part of potential shipping providers for your business.
The same goes for warehouses. Whether you are dealing with a small amount of product on each of the shipping or you are transporting large-sized products from overseas, you should definitely check out the storage unit or the warehouse first. How large is it? Is the security system in the warehouse strong enough? Will there be an adequate amount of space once the products move in? These are the questions that you should ask yourself before deciding upon a shipping provider.
Condition of the Carrier
A great detail that many up-and-coming ecommerce businesses tend to ignore is the fact of checking out the carrier lineup of their shipping providers. Because although on paper something may sound good, it isn’t always the real case.
So, to be safe and cautious, it is safe to check out the vehicle and carrier lineups that will be used for shipping your goods.
Quality Sustainability of the Drivers
This is especially important for long freights, but the sustainability of the drivers is also an important factor that many tend to ignore. Because on the road, the only thing that stands between your goods and their damage is how the driver drives the carrier from one place to another.
So, check the authenticity and the track record of the drivers before you start a long-term relationship with any shipping providers. Because if your drivers can’t sustain the high quality, then this mistake will come back to haunt you sooner or later.
This part is crucial for any ecommerce service because how the delivery or shipping service performs in this scenario will determine if the customer will be back for another purchase or not.
Customers can overlook small inconveniences along the way, but if at the end of the day, when they receive the goods, if they don’t have their expectations met, then you can be sure of the fact that they won’t be returning for your services anytime soon.
These are the most common factors that you need to keep an eye on when picking a shipping provider for your ecommerce business for integration. So, be careful.
The Top 3 Shipping Providers for Your Ecommerce Businesses
Now that you know what to look out for when picking the best shipping provider for your ecommerce services, let’s take a look at the top 3 ecommerce businesses that you should consider doing integration with:
1. Shipping Easy
Shipping Easy is one of the most popular online shipping providers out there. Their remarkable delivery service is only matched with their insanely impressing budget option. Making it one of the most affordable shipping providing services from small ecommerce startups.
They come with three different payment plans. For the free version, you can take up to 50 free orders, but after that, you either have to pick the standard package or the enterprise package.
The standard one and an enterprise plan. The standard plan ranges from 29 dollars on a monthly basis, and this allows the users to make up to 500 deliveries on that month.
But if your business deals with more than 500, then you can always opt for the enterprise package, which allows you to make unlimited deliveries for only 149 dollars per month.
What’s more, you can integrate shipping easily, even when it is on the free version.
- Simple interface which is very easy to use
- Comes with a very good team of customer support
- Can be integrated with unlimited number of businesses, marketplaces, and store while staying on the free plan
- Provides an unlimited delivery option if enterprise package has been picked
- The learning curve is slightly disoriented
- There have been some instability issues regarding the app & websites
- They don’t have the option to link other carrier accounts unless they are part of the USPS in the free plan.
Another great shipping provider for integration, Shippo, is known for its diversity in packages and deliveries. What’s more many consider Shippo as the lifeline for very tight-budget ecommerce businesses. And that’s because Shippo allows its users to avail themselves of up to 200 free services before picking a package to work with.
Shippo has a unique feature if you are not sure how many deliveries that you will have to make after the initial 200 free deliveries. They will charge 5 cents for every delivery that you make after your free 200 deliveries.
But that’s not all. Shippo also has their unique set of packages, two different packages after the free one, and they are the standard package where for 10 dollars a month, you will be able to access Shippo for 30 days with deliveries ranging towards 1000.
But if you are hoping to make a huge number of deliveries, then you can go with the professional package where for 125 dollars a month you will be able to make 5000 deliveries a month.
But the main reason why many e-commerce business owners want to integrate with Shippo is the fact that Shippo offers a great number of discounts on their services. From USPS to DHL, you will be able to get a good discount as long as you are using Shippo.
- One of the easiest platforms to use online.
- Comes with a great number of delivery package options.
- It is very generous with free delivery as it offers free deliveries up to 200 deliveries.
- Offers a great number of discounts
- Although the integration numbers aren’t much high, they have integration with good brands and platforms.
- Customer service is relatively poor compared to other available shipping providers in the market.
- The delivery billing price is complicated and confusing.
- Costs relatively more after initial 200 deliveries.
- Integration numbers aren’t that quite high.
3. Ship Station
If you are looking for one of the highest-rated shipping software in the world, then you will definitely find Ship station on that list. This web-based shipping software can be a great addition regarding integration to your ecommerce business.
The more important fact is that this platform will be free for first-time users for the first month with all the features and options that will definitely affect your business in a good and healthy way.
The most intriguing factor of Ship Station is the fact that Ship Station comes with a lot of different features and options like automated tagging, real-time tracking, custom views, reporting tools, automated tagging, and many more. It is an all-in-all sales managing data platform that allows you to manually control the carriers in ceasing if you are not pleased with the service.
The delivery packages are divided into six different paths. For the starter pack, you can avail of 50 deliveries in a month. For the bronze package, you will be able to have 500 deliveries a month.
From the silver package, the number of users starts to increase, and therefore, in the silver package, there will be two users. And both of the users will be able to do 1500 shipments a month. This number increases to 3000 deliveries for the gold standard, and the user count also goes from 2 to 3.
The platinum package allows five users who can ship 6000 shipments per month for every individual user. And for the enterprise package, the user’s count goes to 10, and the amount of the shipment also cranks up to 10,000 shipments a month.
- Simple and easy-to-use features and mechanisms.
- It is a very good choice for filtering out options.
- Has seamless integrations with various platforms
- It comes with a huge number of features and options
- Provides decent customer service.
- It has a slower interface
- Sometimes delivery offers get jumbled as there are a lot of shipments coming in and out.
- Price is very high compared to other options in the market.
Finding the best shipping providers to integrate your ecommerce business is tough, to say the least. Hopefully, if you have come this far on the article, then you already have three great options of shipping providers.
So, without further ado, pick the shipping provider you want to work with and start your ecommerce journey strong and bold.