What is a shipping policy?
A shipping policy is a concise document or webpage that outlines important information around shipping when an order is placed online. It often includes details on shipping costs and methods, delivery times, and more.
Some shipping policies are more detailed than others, but overall it should be clear, accurate, and easy to understand. Many times, additional information like a returns and exchange policy is also included, creating a comprehensive resource for customers before they purchase.
Why your ecommerce store needs a shipping policy
There are several benefits to having a concise ecommerce shipping policy: It better informs your customers before they checkout, helps answer shipping-related questions, and allows you to take a proactive approach to any shipping issues that may arise.
Inform customers of shipping costs and options
Online shoppers most often search for a shipping policy to determine how much it is going to cost them upfront, depending on where they live. A well-developed shipping policy informs customers of shipping costs and the different shipping options (eg. 2-day shipping, next-day delivery) available prior to ordering.
By displaying shipping costs and the different methods of shipping available, you protect yourself from any customer who may have a complaint about how much they were charged and also save yourself time rather than having each customer inquire through your support channel(s) when they can find it themselves.
Inform customers of delivery times
Many online shoppers are expecting fast delivery. With these high expectations, it’s worth setting expectations with your customers on realistic delivery times. Along with displaying your shipping options, you’ll want to consider including shipping cutoff times (especially holiday shipping deadlines and any UPU delays), shipping times, and how long it would take to ship international orders.
Provide protection on your company’s behalf
Many times, online brands provide more than just shipping details by outlining other information such as return policy and exchanges, product damages, and international shipping expectations.
The more details you include on your shipping policy, the better. It provides you and your customers with peace of mind while answering their questions upfront.