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Hi

While currently designing my tshirt store online, ive come to realise a little fork in the road in terms of shipping.

Here in australia, australia post offers pre-paid satchels. Theyre like water proof plastic slips or bags that are self sealing.

The beauty about them is you dont have to wait in line at the post office to pay for the postage. They're pretty much ready to be shipped and posted, errr... unless its an international package in which case a customs decleration needs to be signed out.

Heres my problem.


Standard shipping within australia

500g satchel (fits around 1 shirt, maybe 2 in a tight fit)
----> $4.90 standard shipping 3-4 days
----> $6.80 next working day delivery

3kg satchels (fits around 4-6 shirts)
---> $8.60 standard 3-4 working days
---> $9.70 next working day delivery

Complicated huh? Thats not even getting into which shipping costs for which international country. I noticed, and sorry to harp yet again about amazon but they have a very conclusive list of how much what will cost for which country.

My concern is if I make it simple, like a $5 shipping fee in australia and something like, oh I dont know $11 shipping fee for all international customers, Im worried somewhere along the line it may cut into my tshirt profit.

If I go into great detail about which shipping fee for which country, I may run the risk of loosing the customer in all the gobblety-goop.

What do you think I should do? :(
 

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ShadowDragon said:
Standard shipping within australia

500g satchel (fits around 1 shirt, maybe 2 in a tight fit)
----> $4.90 standard shipping 3-4 days
----> $6.80 next working day delivery

3kg satchels (fits around 4-6 shirts)
---> $8.60 standard 3-4 working days
---> $9.70 next working day delivery

Complicated huh? Thats not even getting into which shipping costs for which international country. I noticed, and sorry to harp yet again about amazon but they have a very conclusive list of how much what will cost for which country.

My concern is if I make it simple, like a $5 shipping fee in australia and something like, oh I dont know $11 shipping fee for all international customers, Im worried somewhere along the line it may cut into my tshirt profit.

If I go into great detail about which shipping fee for which country, I may run the risk of loosing the customer in all the gobblety-goop.
As a general rule you should make money on shipping and handling or build it into your price. Most customers will understand they need to pay shipping costs.

I go about it another way. I charge a fixed handling fee and then add a shipping cost based on the cost of the order. The larger the cost, the smaller the % of shipping charges. Something like $3 for the first $10, $4 for the next $20, 5$ for the next $50 and then $6 for everything over that. So the most we charge for shipping is $2.95 handling and packing + $6 shipping. Our price for our product has a nice profit built in that if shipping is more to us we are still covered.

Our shopping cart software calculates the shipping so the customer is never presented with a complicated formula. If someone calls us then we just quote a flat charge without telling them how we arrived at it.
 

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I think the handling charge is a good way to go. I would charge a one time handling fee per order, regardless of the amount of shirts ordered and calculate your international shipping charges according to the amount of shirts shipped.
 

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As a general rule you should make money on shipping and handling or build it into your price. Most customers will understand they need to pay shipping costs.
I tend to think the opposite way. I don't think you should use shipping as a profit center. Customers know they should pay shipping, but they also want (and demand) fair shipping costs. If they feel that they are inflated, you could lose sales.
 

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i agree makign a profit off shipping is not the way to go - i have been known to go online and check with the lostal service in that country (if available online) to get an estimate of shipping costs -

what if you put a link to email you for international shipping inquiries and handle them on a case by case basis??

I know here in the US we have a global flat rate box & envelope - i have used them before to save a lot of money for people.
 

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Rodney said:
I tend to think the opposite way. I don't think you should use shipping as a profit center. Customers know they should pay shipping, but they also want (and demand) fair shipping costs. If they feel that they are inflated, you could lose sales.
Like I said, you can build it into the price of your product or charge a separate line item for it but in the end you are charging for shipping/packing/handling regardless of how you recognize the charge.

I offered several solutions to the OP who was asking for help without confusing his customers or pissing them off with complicated formulas.

Here is just one example of how this works. There are several vendors of blanks that advertise on this site. One charges for shipping the other does not. The one that charges for shipping has lower per-unit prices and the one that ships for free is higher by as much as 12%. When the shipping charges are added in the higher priced per-item vendor is less expensive for the same product.
 

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ShopaholicChick said:
what if you put a link to email you for international shipping inquiries and handle them on a case by case basis??
You are guaranteed to lose most of your potential customers that way. It's just putting too many barriers in the way of the customer making (what should be) a simple purchase.

ShopaholicChick said:
I know here in the US we have a global flat rate box & envelope - i have used them before to save a lot of money for people.
USPS flat rate envelopes are great; unfortunately we don't have an equivalent in Australia. There are some international flat rate envelopes, but they're expensive and not as flexible.
 

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Like I said, you can build it into the price of your product or charge a separate line item for it but in the end you are charging for shipping/packing/handling regardless of how you recognize the charge.
I honestly don't think that you have to charge extra for handling (as a small business). For a larger business with more overhead, maybe. But not even then (some larger companies still only charge the exact shipping charges without adding more to the product price).

You certainly can add money into your product price to cover "handling", my point is that you don't have to, and your customers might appreciate the non-inflated price.
 
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