If you’re just starting out as an online boutique owner, one of the first decisions you’ll need to make is how you want to handle shipping, from what shipping company to your online boutique shipping rates. There are a few different options available, and it can be tricky to decide which is the best for your new business.
That’s because it will depend on the products you’ll be shipping, the experience you want customers to have and—most importantly— how you price your products.
So in this post, we’ll take a look the most popular options and help you decide which is the right choice for you to be able to show you how to start an online boutique.
There are 3 main options to choose from when you’re starting your online boutique. But each option has its own set of pros and cons.
So let’s take a closer look at each one and why you should consider it.
Choosing Free Shipping For Your Online Boutique
When you don’t charge your customers for the online boutique shipping rates, and instead absorb the cost yourself.
It can be a great way to attract new customers, as they’ll be more likely to order from you if they know that shipping is free. Selling products online is all about removing as many barriers to the purchase as possible. So if free shipping helps that happen, we’re all for it.
However, it’s important to make sure that you’re still making a profit on each sale even with the shipping costs factored in. That will depend on 3 key factors among others:
1) The cost of the product from your vendor.
2) What it costs to process and package the order for your customer.
3) The profit margin you want on each item (which is what helps you spend on marketing, reinvest in new inventory and eventually pay yourself and hire help).
You can generally account for free shipping by setting your retail prices a little higher than you would if you were charging for shipping. But that all depends on the specific numbers in your business.
Want to learn more about pricing products in your online boutique? Click here to read more.
Charging Flat rate Shipping For Your Online Boutique
This is when you charge your customers a standard shipping rate, regardless of how many items they’re buying or where they’re located.
The downside to this option is that you may be losing out on some potential sales if the customer feels like the price for shipping makes it not worth it for them to buy from you.
And (if you don’t price correctly) you might be losing out on profit when you eventually tally up how the shipping costs affect your bottom line.
However, charging a flat online boutique shipping rates can be simpler for you as a business owner, and it can help keep your shipping costs more consistent when you’re tracking your spending.
The key is to really understand your target customer and offer a shipping price that won’t get in the way of someone placing an order.
Using Threshold-based Shipping For Your Online Boutique
This is when you only charge your customers for shipping if they order a certain amount of products or reach a particular order value.
This can be a great way to encourage customers to buy more items, as they’ll get free shipping on their order once they reach the threshold.
However, it can be tricky to set the right threshold amount so that you’re not losing out on sales. You want to make sure that you’re still making a profit once the online boutique shipping rates costs are factored in. But you also don’t want to set the threshold too high that customers won’t have an incentive to buy more items.
Not only does the threshold need to make sense but you should also curate the right collection of items so that customers aren’t scrambling to find something to buy just to meet the threshold. All of the products you offer should easily go together.
The goal is to have a customer happily fill their cart.
Want to learn how to curate collections for your online boutique? Click here to start today.
Making A Decision
So which option is right for your online boutique?
That all comes down to your target customer and your pricing strategy for your online boutique!
But we generally prefer the threshold-based shipping option. Not only does it help increase your AOV or average order value, but it also leaves room for you to offer free shipping as a special promotion or during the holiday season.
So instead of offering free shipping year round, you might just offer it during Black Friday or Cyber Week.
Hopefully, this blog post has helped to clarify your options and what you should consider as you decide.
Deciding on the right shipping option for your boutique can be confusing. But now you know the most popular options available. And how to make the best decision for your business.