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While running an online store, you need to hurdle through thousands of problems every time. If you do not meet the solutions instantly, you are going to lose your potential customers. To retain good customers and also to gain more, you need to be extra careful with the shipping aspects. Shipping is one such factor, wherein you need to be extra cautious and careful as well as accurate. Even a tiny mistake can cause a setback in your business. Online purchases with guaranteed delivery are something every online shopper is looking for. In order to ensure there are no shipping problems encountered online store owners need to be extra careful.
To help you with a few of the common shipping problems encountered usually in your store, here we list a few shipping problems with their fixes in the best possible way. Let’s take a look at them.
#1 Finding your right shipping carrier
Getting started with an online business takes up a lot much work in the initial stage as well as in the execution. Apart from the store set up and other basic functions, you also need to work on, which shipping carrier to choose from. Luckily you have plenty of choices to choose from. Shop owners can choose the shipping carrier based upon various criteria like what you are shipping, the location, the reputation , speed, reliability, convenience, tracking efficiency, live shipping rates, and even pricing. Providing the default shipping rates upon rough calculations to your customers is not a good option. The shipping rates do differ upon the product you send, the location as well as the packing of the product. One needs to be careful in choosing the right shipping rate before offering the customer a final price.
The type of product you sell is also one of the factors that help to decide upon the shipping carrier you choose.If you are into selling food items or temperature-sensitive items, then you need to be cautious while sending the items to your customers. You have to choose a shipping carrier who is efficient in delivering the items with great speed and utmost safety without hampering the quality of the item. Luckily you have a wide range of shipping carriers available like the DHL, Australia Post, Canada Post, USPS, UPS, FedEx, etc. who offer their relevant services to assist you.
If you are using a WooCommerce store, you can also go for the default WooCommerce shipping options like flat-rate, local pickup, and free shipping. These are most suited for shops selling in and around in a smaller area. But what if you want to ship not only locally but internationally, then you need to be quite sure about the rates you display in your shop. You need to provide the right shipping options that will ease the job of getting the package to your customer on a right and economical rate. To get this done smoothly, you can integrate the shipping plugins by popular shipping carriers like FedEx, DHL, USPS, etc on your store. You can opt for popular WooCommerce shipping plugins to get the integration done smoothly.
With shipping plugin integration, it not only solves the problem of displaying the right shipping rates but also in tracking the order efficiently from your WooCommerce store. Most of the reputable shipping carriers have their tracking system. But using these plugins you can right away track the orders on your store directly.
Insurance coverage is important to get the packages insured while shipping to reduce the loss incurred while shipping due to unprecedented loss or damage. Most of the shipping plugins offer a minimum amount for insurance while shipping, which is again added to the price depending on the customer’s choice. Apart from these, you can include third-party insurance for shipping, which will be ideal when you encounter unprecedented loss or damage.
#2 Technical problems while integrating the carriers with your WooCommerce website
Not just finding the right shipping carriers for your store solves the problem. Identifying the right shipping carrier extension is important when you want to integrate the shipping plugins to your WooCommerce store. While integrating , there might be several problems like the data mismatch, the shipping options are not being displayed accurately, the shipping rates displayed are not valid, and many more. For this, you need to find the plugins that seamlessly integrate with your shop page and also provides you accurate data. Not just the integration part, but also the generation of shipping labels, order tracking, the management of packing algorithms, etc . does take up an important role in choosing the right plugin. To solve these issues at the forefront, you need the right shipping carrier plugin that will be ideal for your store supporting your business needs.
#3 Presenting the right pricing for your customers
Pricing is quite a confusing part in the case of shipping. Most of the time, there are several factors that need to be considered before providing the price for your customers. You might not want to provide the same price for a bulk purchaser and a regular purchaser. In such cases, handling two different kinds of prices in the same store seems lots of work. To help you with designing a pricing pattern for your dedicated customers in order to retain them you can depend on certain pricing plugins, which will help you derive at a pricing plan in a better way.
In order to derive a pricing pattern that will not cause abandonment of cart by your customers, you can plan various kinds of pricing like allocating special discounts, offers, etc. To keep your potential customers closer, you need to devise certain pricing plans exclusively for them. In order to incorporate the same on your WooCommerce store, you can use the wholesale and role-based pricing plugin as well as dynamic pricing plugins that will help you to allocate prices rightly that will satisfy your customer needs and help to retain them. Taxes also play a vital role in the pricing, WooCommerce offers several tax options that can be made use of in the store while processing the pricing for the customers.
#4 Challenges while fulfilling the orders
In the order fulfillment process, you tend to go through several challenges that need a good fix. Here are some of them:
Delay in shipment
Shipment delay is quite an important issue to look into. Nobody likes a delayed shipment. Most of the store owners can’t predict the delay in shipment, caused by external factors. But yes, what you can do, is keep the customers posted about the delay, which will make them feel that they are valued. You can also provide an estimated delivery date while the customer places an order on your store. And also use emails and other notifications on the store page, to inform about the delay in the order. Most of the shipping plugins which used popular shipping services like FedEx, UPS, USPS, Canada Post, Australia Post, DHL, etc used the intimation methods using several plugin add-ons to help them serve the customers and keep them looped in the information about the packages.
Tracking number error
Whenever an order is placed on the store, you need to provide the customer with a tracking id, to help them track the order. When you are manually setting it up, you need to process the order separately using a third-party shipping carrier and then obtain the tracking number from them and place it with the order. Sometimes, due to human error or some unprecedented problems, mistakes can happen and you might provide the wrong tracking number for a package. This is indeed a serious shipping problem to look into. To solve the same, you can integrate the shipping plugins to your WooCommerce store, which will automatically assign the tracking number to the order without any manual intervention. Here without any errors, the order tracking numbers generated by the shipping carrier is attached to the respective order id.
Customer refusal on COD (Cash on Delivery)
Sometimes, your customer might refuse the order at the time of delivery. It might be because they no longer need it or maybe they placed it wrongly. Handling return shipments is indeed a difficult job. Now using the shipping carriers you can easily let your customer return the shipment without much hassle. But again, the loss occurring upon the returns is indispensable. To reduce the same, you can either charge the customer a meager amount upon return and also charge a minimum amount upon orders that are eligible for cash on delivery.
An order canceled by either side
Sometimes, the customer no longer needs the items or on placing the order wrongly, cancels the order. Even though it is not going to be a black mark on your business, you still need to handle these canceled orders. Your business must be easy to work on these unexpected cancellations. The best way to do so is efficiently using the tracking information on your store. To keep all the ends of the order fulfilling system aware of what is happening with the order, the tracking number is the ideal one. If your customer does not require the product, they can immediately cancel the order without any hassle. If the order has not left the warehouse, it is easy to manage, but if the order has already been dispatched and is handled by a third-party, then the order tracking number is the major source of information. When the package is out for delivery, and the customer cancels the order, the order status is modified, and thus the package can be returned to the store owner.
Invalid customer address
The address is an important factor while shipping. At times, customers tend to provide wrong addresses and you end up delivering the products in the wrong location. Even though the error happens from the customer side, it is again a black mark for your business. To ensure that your customers enter the right address, you can help them validate it using the address validation plugin for WooCommerce store. The plugin uses the address validation method as well as Google auto-populate address options to help the customers obtain the address correctly as well as validate the same.
When you have a lot of orders to deliver or collect returns, managing them is difficult. This is particularly true when you have to deliver or pick the orders from the respective locations. The availability of pickup points is quite beneficial in this case. Your customers can choose the desired time and closer pickup points to collect their packages or even place their returns and the store owner can schedule a pickup to collect these packages easily using popular shipping services. Mainly there are post offices, collection points, click and collect, parcel lockers, etc, which offers greater flexibility.
The customer received a damaged product
Damaged products can infuriate customers. It also ruins the reputation of your business. It is important to ensure that you send the products without any damage. If your manufacturing department makes the mistake, then you need to be extra vigilant in packing the order. But if the error happens while packaging, you need to adhere to the packaging rules and regulations followed by the shipping carriers efficiently. Another way to avoid such mistakes is the shipping label. Using the label with clear labeling and indication of the type of products like breakable, gadgets, etc, you can ward off the shipping problem of damaged products caused by negligence. Moreover, shipping insurance for every package is ideal to reduce the losses incurred upon damages. You can include shipping insurance on your WooCommerce store, easily and provide the option to the customers when they are purchasing products that are delicate or even difficult to handle.
Order is returned, but not in inventory
When your customer rejects the order and then the order is returned but never reached the inventory it is again a loss. In such shipping problems, the store owner has to hassle around searching for the order which has been sent back by the customer. This is again trouble when it is depending on third-party shipping. To solve the same, it is important to track the return orders very carefully in your store. You can maintain a return order detail upon the order tracking number received from the shipping career ensuring that every halt is tracked. This can be easily done using the order details from the store itself.
Technical problem with the website or status update
It is important to keep the status of the order updated on your store site to keep the customers informed. All the customers enjoy being up to date regarding the order transit. Using the WooCommerce shipping plugins, that can be easily integrated into your WooCommerce store, you can keep the data up-to-date without any hassle. Also, you can make use of email tools for the shipping plugins, that will keep the customer posted about the order status, on every change happening in the transit like the location data or the arrival date, etc using the add-ons that will make the job easier. Using such methods, you can keep the customer informed.
Getting refunds for the orders
When you own an eCommerce store, you need to ensure you have a transparent and easy return and refund policies to help your customers. You can make use of several WooCommerce payment plugins that will ease the process of transactions.like the Authorize.net, Amazon Pay, etc, which can be quickly integrated into your WooCommerce store. With these payment plugins, you can not only track the payments but capture as well as make both partial and full refunds with ease.
#5 Maintaining customer relationship
Customers always prefer easy contact options. The first visit the store and then look for options wherein they get quick replies from the support system. You can make use of the support desk or chat system, incorporated on your WooCommerce store, and then help your customers easily in the way they want. Prompt responses from the store support team will keep your customers happy and satisfied. You can track the complaints and assign the right person to work upon it using an efficient WordPress support helpdesk system and also use the chatbots to ensure that no queries are missed from your customer. In this way, you can keep your customer happy.
To Wrap up
Shipping problems are never to be ignored, as they are the keyholders for your store’s success. To keep the customers happy and satisfied, shipping problems must be taken care of well. To ensure you have a proper shipping system, you can incorporate various factors that will be handy to negate these shipping problems that arise on the go.