I want it now! The importance of timely shipping rates

Author: Karen Baker  |  December 2, 2015

A Story

It’s the week before Christmas. Life is busy.  That great train set you had safely tucked away on the sleigh since November, well your son just informed you that trains are old news and he really wants a drone.

So now what?

You could argue give him the train 😉

Or you go buy a drone.  But its 1 week to go.  Do you go to the website that says this?



or this (please ignore my bad dec box, its late, I want to sleep tonight!):


The answer should be obvious.  You will go with the one that guarantees delivery.  In fact you would probably pay more to get it guaranteed on a certain day, the free shipping really is irrelevant at this point – YOU NEED THE DRONE.

Time in Transit

The benefits to displaying the time of delivery, the transit time, or for perishables/flowers/etc giving the customer an actual calendar to pick a date (and potentially a time slot) is pretty obvious.  The reality is that most eCommerce carts by default do not offer this option to customers. Furthermore many of you may be aware that if you order say ‘Overnight’ that doesn’t mean tomorrow its on your doorstep. You may have missed their cut-off window for the day, it might take a day to get the goods out, or it might be Friday, in which case Monday is the earliest (assuming its not Home Delivery FedEx which never delivers on a Monday!).


Selling cupcakes & birthday cakes?  We see a ton of stores that just offer In-Store Pickup here because they say they can’t ship it.  Well they can, but only in the 1-day timeframe.  Or worse they offer shipping everywhere then have to cancel orders with customers when its outside their area. They can’t offer non-perishables as its all confusing then, some can ship, some cant, etc etc.

Up-selling Shipping

It’s important to look at the up-sell possible on shipping which can be gained with Time in Transit.  Customers in general are going to pay to get stuff faster.  So you may lose money on say a free shipping promotion over $40 of goods, but if you incentivize them to purchase Next Day or 2 Day then overall you can come out with a win. Especially if you add a little percentage cushion on that Next Day delivery to give you a bit of profit.  Here is a great example of how one store holds back their produce if you need it shipping free.

Same Day Delivery

People want things fast, Amazon is keying into this with Same-Day delivery in many key cities, and online merchants with their own stores need to step up. At ShipperHQ we see the advance of services such as Postmates/UberRUSH/Roadie really changing the online landscape in the next 12-18months for retailers, if you are in NY you can readily serve that local market within hours. What with the desire of customers to ‘shop local & shop niche’ we believe it provides good opportunity for merchants to take on the likes of Amazon.

In fact same-day delivery has been around a little while, we have had stores offer this loading up a custom set of table rates to serve customers.

How do I solve this?

ShipperHQ.com. Come talk to us. Your cart, your shipping, your rules.