Follow Our Planning Timeline for Seamless Holiday Shipping

October 4, 2016
Author: Renee Bingling

Shipping is often one of the most important elements of your business’ successful holiday season, as customer satisfaction depends just as much on shipping as it does on your product. Without advanced planning, it is more difficult to cover all the bases of efficient and affordable shipping, in the midst of the holiday season’s chaos. Follow our simple and easy holiday shipping planning timeline to help you pull off seamless holiday shipping, leaving your customers happy and your margins healthy. Don't worry, if you're a little behind, as you still have time to catch up.

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To avoid repeating mistakes, examine last year’s season. Summer is perfect to start planning as you have enough time to fix what was broken. Look at what went well, what didn’t and what had potential if given enough attention.

SEPTEMBER - Shop Around

The shipping industry is always changing, so keep abreast and broaden your options. Your business may have evolved since last year and other carriers and solutions may be better suited. Research shipping solutions and compare the suitability of each carrier against each product or shipping scenario.

OCTOBER - Stock Up

Restock enough of your best sellers, stock up on packaging and invest in software that saves fees such as an address correction software. Find out the latest seasonal delivery deadlines and carriers' rates.

NOVEMBER - Fine-Tune

Finalize details such as return policy, seasonal delivery changes, hiring and training and an outbound shipping solution. Test your supply chain for a seamless fit and develop a contingency plan for weak areas. Finalize your reverse logistics and customer relationship management plans.

DECEMBER - Delivery Time

Remain vigilant about breakdowns in plans and be ready to put your contingency plans into place. Your concern should be about managing customer retention through your customer delivery experience and quick crisis response.

JANUARY - Handling Returns

Your customer retention is also influenced by your returns process. Also, don’t forget to follow-up with your new customers.

Get more tips on how to prepare for holiday shipping. Download our white paper, The Ultimate Holiday Shipping Guide for Businesses.


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