The free shipping approach of “free shipping on all orders, every day” is an excellent option for customers, not so much for the sellers — especially if you’re a new or small- to medium-sized retailer.
Not to worry, below are 7 ways to offer free shipping to your customers without breaking your budget.
During Specific Times
Plenty of retailers offer this option periodically, such as Valentine’s Day, Black Friday, Mother’s Day, Father’s Day, or over the holidays, instead of throughout the year. This is because this is when customers expect free shipping and your competition will become more aggressive.
On Specific Products
This approach is commonly used for items with greater margins so that you can comfortably absorb the costs. However, consider some products with lower margins so that all your customers could benefit from your offer.
To Specific Places
You could do this by offering it to customers located in the U.S. Likewise, you should consider a “buy online, pick up in store” option wherein customers could shop online and pick up their orders in your physical store. This could also potentially result in in-store purchases.
With Minimum Limits
Placing a minimum order value limit is an excellent way to subtly urge customers to purchase more products.
On Return Items
This free shipping option is specifically crucial if you’re a retailer of footwear or apparel. Make sure to leverage your inventory and shipping software to ensure that returns and new orders won’t get mixed up.
It’s common practice for retailers to give incentives to loyal customers and encourage repeat purchases for newer ones. This is a good way to experience free shipping gains in the longer run since you could also simultaneously increase your customers’ lifetime value.
For Members Only
It’s usually the high-end retailers who offer this option. Basically, they offer free shipping on all or certain products to select customers for a yearly fee.
Before you start rolling out these offers, however, you have to test them out first so that you could pinpoint the ones that work best for your bottom line — do your due diligence, research your competitors, and most importantly, know your customers.