Working with multiple shipping carriers to fulfill your company’s shipping needs presents a laundry list of challenges. Trying to find the carrier with the best rates can be a time-consuming process and it also leaves a lot of room for shipping mistakes, both of which can result in a loss of productivity and operating dollars.
The same can also be said about the process of managing and attempting to retrieve the addresses of your frequent recipients.
Let’s explore how that process gets simpler and less costly when you use a central address database.
Shipping mistakes caused by multiple address books
Through traditional methods, using multiple shipping carriers meant maintaining multiple lists of addressees for each respective carrier.
Maintaining an efficient shipping department is essential for a business to remain in its customers’ good standing, and any issues can have a dramatic impact on a company’s bottom line. In fact, a recent MIT study shows that outbound shipping accounts for up to 7% of the revenue generated by an online retailer.
That presents a pretty tremendous opportunity to make money, but it also presents a pretty tremendous opportunity to lose money if an organization is prone to costly shipping mistakes. If your company happens to do global business (and these days, even smaller businesses have international customers) the process can become even more complicated.
When recipient addresses are stored in multiple locations across multiple shipping carrier platforms, the room for shipping mistakes is greatly increased. Changes made on UPS.com aren’t going to translate to FedEx.com. Let’s face it, attempting to remember to change addresses in every carrier that a business uses to ship is bound to go wrong at some point.
Here’s a more detailed example:
Your company is shipping a package to a recipient using FedEx as the carrier. At the last minute, the recipient requests an address change. Your shipping team makes the requested changes on FedEx.com. Now, a month goes by and your company needs to send another package to that same recipient, only this time the situation dictates that you use UPS as the shipping carrier. Well, guess what? The recipient’s new address was never updated on UPS.com so that package is on its way to the wrong address.
The cost of shipping mistakes
How much do those shipping mistakes cost in time, shipping expense and the cost of whatever is in the package? It’s hard to say for sure, but shipping costs alone are going to get pricey, as most carriers will charge $8 to $15 each time they need to make a shipping address correction. And that’s for a simple change, like switching “Lane” to “Road.”
The cost of that shipping correction is going to go up if the recipient is an international customer. It doesn’t take much math to see just how costly shipping mistakes related to the challenge of managing addresses in multiple locations can become.
If your business has multiple locations that conduct shipping the potential for costly shipping mistakes is multiplied even more. A company must make certain that every step in the shipping process is buttoned up and no part of the process is overlooked. Order submission, inventory retrieval, shipping and customer invoicing must all come together in a seamless process. It’s hard enough to accomplish that when orders are coming through and being shipped out by just one location. If a business uses multiple sites to process orders and ship, the need for a centralized, multi-carrier shipping solution is even more vital.
If you’ve been shopping around for shipping solutions, you know it’s time-consuming and complex to compare them. Get this helpful checklist that defines the best features and lets you know who does what: Shipping Solutions Comparison Checklist: A guide to understanding the options for automating office shipping.
So how, exactly, do you avoid those costly shipping mistakes?
The answer lies in a good multi-carrier shipping solution like SendPro from Pitney Bowes. SendPro will allow you to keep all addresses in a central database and use it for all carriers.
That means that one simple update has you covered for all shipping options, regardless of which carrier you choose to go with. The system also automatically checks addresses prior to printing labels so you can correct any shipping mistakes prior to sending and avoid costly correction charges. The end result is faster, more efficient and more accurate shipping. The company saves money and the customer gets their packages on time–it’s a win win!
Nobody is perfect, and mistakes are bound to occur, but what better way to correct those mistakes and keep them from becoming even bigger issues than to catch them before they ever happen? The SendPro solution will allow you to correct any of those shipping mistakes before the label is ever printed.
Better address management = happier customers
Making sure your packages get sent to the right addresses impacts more than ensuring deliverables get into the right hands. Delivering to the correct addresses (or not!) will have a direct impact on customer satisfaction. A track record of shipping mistakes can quickly damage your company’s image. A multi-carrier solution like SendPro protects your company image by eliminating those damaging shipping mistakes. The system allows you to process and manage mailing lists with ease.
The address management feature in SendPro compliments the feature of working with multiple carriers. The end result is the ultimate tool for comparing shipping rates and choosing the best way to send every package. You can rest assured that you’re paying the best possible price to ship and that the right recipients are going to get the right packages without having to worry about shipping mistakes.
Your customers need to feel important. Nothing makes that task more difficult than sending your customers duplicate or wrong mail, or in some cases, no mail at all. Keep your customers from feeling like nothing more than simple numbers by using a multi-carrier solution like SendPro, which will eliminate those damaging shipping mistakes by helping your company manage its customers and biggest supporters with advanced list management and address updating.
Remember, it’s a lost opportunity each time you make a shipping mistake. Each time you send a package to one of your customers you have an opportunity to solidify your company’s image and build a rock solid client base. Don’t jeopardize those opportunities and open yourself up to shipping mistakes by trying to juggle multiple mailing lists across multiple shipping carriers. With a true multi-carrier shipping solution you can get it right every time.
Keep your response rates up and shipping mistakes down, and ultimately increase the value of your organization’s mailing department.
Superior Office Systems is New York City’s only Pitney Bowes partner! We can help you simplify mailing & shipping, cut costs and improve productivity with Pitney Bowes solutions.