COVID-19 is having an unprecedented impact on communities and on our economy. As retailers close their locations and people stay home to social-distance, there has been an increase in online shopping and package deliveries.
While shipping carriers continue to operate as an essential service, there may be some changes that could temporarily impact the way you fulfill orders. To keep your business moving during these uncertain times, we’ve put together a list of strategies to help you ship orders and communicate with customers.
- Optimizing your shipping strategy
- Getting products to your customers
- Communicating with your customers
1. Optimize your shipping strategy
Free packaging materials
Many carriers offer free packaging for use with a specific shipping rate. Although there is no cost for the materials, you might need to create a free account with the carrier in order for them to send it to you.
The following Shopify Shipping carriers offer free packaging:
Shipping rates at checkout
Now more than ever, customers are expecting fast and affordable delivery options.
While shipping times can’t be controlled, you can consider pricing options like free or flat-rate shipping. If you choose to offer free shipping, you can include the fee in your product prices, or you can absorb the shipping costs. If you choose to offer flat-rate shipping, customers will pay one consistent rate depending on where they are located.
Save time buying shipping labels
Adding weights for your products and packages will ensure you get accurate label prices on Shopify Shipping and save time when purchasing a label.
2. Get products to your customers
Due to COVID-19, some carriers have temporarily changed their shipping services and policies. Shipping delays should be expected due to canceled flights, governmental decisions, and staff reductions. Consider offering local delivery for customers who are located nearby.
Avoid unnecessary trips to the post office by purchasing discounted shipping labels directly from Shopify. To purchase a shipping label, select “Create shipping label” from an order page and select the carrier you want to ship with. Once purchased, print your shipping label and attach it to your package.
You can then schedule a pickup with your carrier. Packages can be left in a designated location to ensure a six-foot distance between you and your courier.
- Package pickups can be scheduled Shopify after purchasing a shipping label
- UPS dropoff locations
- Free package pickups can be scheduled Shopify after purchasing a shipping label
- DHL dropoff locations
💡 Note: Before bringing your packages to a dropoff location, please contact the carrier to confirm their current availability and hours of operation.
3. Communicate with your customers
Stay in touch with your customers to communicate shipping delays and encourage engagement through updates and promotional offers.
Communicate shipping delays
Send an email to your subscribers and/or create an announcement bar to share shipping updates with customers on your site.
Leverage social media
With many people staying at home, now is a good time to communicate using social media. Let your customers know how they can continue to support your business, whether through online shopping, local pickups and deliveries, or with gift cards. You can also share promotional codes to boost sales and communicate safety measures your business is following.
For more resources to help you navigate your business during the COVID-19 health crisis, visit our blog.