In an early stage eCommerce business, merchants are focused on making sales. Therefore, many downstream steps, including shipping, are somewhat rudimentary – perhaps even standing in line at the post office. Before online orders warrant a shipping solution, sellers can adopt a basic workflow that will ensure accurate packing and delivery. Copying and pasting the destination address to a PC postage provider or USPS Click N Ship is the most common starting point. Printing the packing slip from the selling platform ensures the right items are packed and provide an easy reference for both buyer and seller.
For the small online seller, this flowchart represents a typical shipping process that does not have a shipping solution in place. We also assume one-at-a-time order processing and using the packing slip to pick. Here is a snap shot of the end-to-end, most basic process for early stage online sellers:
The Basic Shipping Flowchart
- Requires minimal set up time. As you’re weighing each shipment individual, there’s no need to enter product weights on the website. You can start shipping right when your website goes live without extra time spent on website implementation!
- Top-notch accuracy. Weighing, printing, and shipping each order individually ensures that the exact packaging is accounted for and makes it exceptionally easy to get the correct label on each box.
- Need to log into multiple programs. As you’re printing the packing slip and copying the address from the store platform, and then printing the label from the carrier platform, you need to log into multiple softwares to get the job done.
- More time to ship the packages. Weighing, printing, and shipping each order individually adds clicks to the process which leads to more time spent shipping.
As the online business grows to more than a few orders a week, the merchant might look for a shipping solution that will allow more advanced processing. For example, the automatic download of all order details, including the destination address. This eliminates copying and pasting, saving time and increasing accuracy. In addition, shipping solutions tend to offer discounted rates on shipping leveraging their aggregate volume. Solutions like ShippingEasy offer a Starter plan for merchants just starting out.
Related Articles & Resources
- Choosing an eCommerce Shipping Solution: features & benefits
- Shipping process flowchart: basic with shipping solution
- Shipping process flowchart: advanced process with weight in selling platform
- Shipping process flowchart: advanced process without weight in selling platform
- Shipping process flowchart: daily deals
- Shipping process flowchart: returns
- Order processing and fulfillment
- Picking and packing eCommerce orders