A while back, we decided to set up a flat-rate shipping policy, based on one of Bert`s white papers. It`s been terrific, and we`re using the US Postal Service (USPS), shipping first-class mail. Our flags fit nicely into an envelope, and meet the requirements.
We also include a Delivery Confirmation with all orders. This doesn`t
provide for point-to-point tracking, but it does at least offer the
customer (and ourselves) a notification of delivery.
Recently, we`ve had a few packages that seem to vanish into a black
hole. They show a delivery to the local post office, but the customer
hasn`t received the item. They`re not scammers---they`re legit
customers, it just happens that the USPS has lost the package.
Flat-rate is around $7, on average, where UPS would raise the price to
around $10. However, the customer would know exactly where`s their
package, and it would include insurance.
We could put a notice on our site that we`re not responsible for lost
packages, but that`s not very customer friendly. We DO offer, on our
order form, the option for alternate shipping, and customers can choose
UPS or FedEx if they`d like to spend a bit more money. Flat-rate
shipping is only USPS, and the lowest shipping price.
So now we`re trying to figure out how to best balance customer-friendly
service and low shipping costs, with potential lost packages. It`s so
far been only 2 instances, a *very* low percentage, but we`re thinking
we should have some sort of policy in place.
Any thoughts? I know for myself, I don`t like being restricted to only
UPS. In an apartment, if you`re not home, they don`t leave the package.
Yet a lot of sites only offer UPS, with no option for regular mail. I
On the other hand, to force everyone to use a US Express Mail---the
only point-tracking service---would make it even more expensive than
UPS in some cases.