Looking for a company that can package and ship my product to customers.

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Hello,

New to Warrior Forum, glad to be here!

I'm almost ready to launch my first business on the internet. I'm a one man show at this point.
I'm looking at my operation as a whole, short term and long term. My question, I'm prepared to fulfill orders myself.
This includes packaging and shipping. I don't know how things may start out, I may sell 1 or 20. My worst nightmare, being unable to handle the number of orders that I receive. I'm also looking at ways of cutting cost in regard to shipping. I'm looking into different options, one being Shippo for example. I was wondering if I could align myself with a company in which I supplied my product (which is shipped in a custom-made box along with merchandise) and they would fulfill orders. I was thinking, this would allow me to cut down on shipping cost, while with certainty being able to fulfill my orders in a professional and efficient manner.

I know a fee would be assessed for this service, but it seems worth it in the long run.

Is this possible? Is it too early to be thinking this way, since I'm just starting out?
Should I simply undertake this task myself?
These will be light packages, 17 x 11 picture in a wood frame, as well as blankets to start.
Any advice would be greatly appreciated.
I thank God for sites like this, as many of us know starting something that you believe in can be a lonely process.
Take care and be safe
#company #customers #package #product #ship
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  • Profile picture of the author Kay King
    Have you considered becoming an Amazon seller?


    https://sell.amazon.com/fulfillment-by-amazon
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    • Profile picture of the author Brett Dunbar
      Hey Kay,

      Thank you for taking the time to reply to my post. Now that I have just about everything ready for launch (a few tweaks to my website and Etsy). I'm looking at everything and I'm open to all avenues in which to market my merchandise.
      I guess that's what make me hesitant, for lack of better words.

      I'm totally prepared to fulfill orders myself; I was actually hoping to eventually offer someone a part time job. I don't want to think I'm jumping the gun (I haven't made one sale yet!). Simply thinking ahead, if we don't believe in ourselves - why should someone else. I'm going to check out the link you provided.

      Starting a business can be a lonely process at times. Especially when you have a different mindset than all those around you. Thanks for the support!

      Take care and be safe.
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  • Profile picture of the author DWolfe
    Originally Posted by Brett Dunbar View Post

    Is this possible? Is it too early to be thinking this way, since I'm just starting out?
    Should I simply undertake this task myself?
    Since your just starting out one of the most important things. Is to get your product listed and sold. You can worry about someone else handling shipping later down the road. Most newbies never get start in the first place.

    When you go to Amazon sign up as a Individual seller in the beginning. To avoid paying $39.99 a month for being a professional. Once you cross 40 sales then go for the Pro Plan.

    Good Luck

    Edit - if you need supplies look into U Line or Staples in the very beginning . Get a idea of postal costs ahead of time. Also when you get chance here is good thread about selling - https://www.warriorforum.com/warrior...days-ebay.html
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    • Profile picture of the author Brett Dunbar
      Hello,
      Thanks for taking the time to reply to my post and the insight.
      Means the world to me.
      Nice to know I have a group I can share my thoughts with...
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  • Profile picture of the author savidge4
    The absolute worst thing that will happen here is you are up all night shipping...

    BUT there is kinda an easier way... as you make it, box it... and all you are doing is slapping a label on the box.

    If you could leave some dimensions and weight of your boxes I might be able to help you better understand postage and your probable least expensive options.
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    • Profile picture of the author Brett Dunbar
      You are absolutely right.
      I have definitely had worse problems.
      Appreciate your thoughts and insight!
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    • Profile picture of the author Brett Dunbar
      Hey,

      I hope all is well. The box dimensions are 20 x 14 x3.
      I weighed my package and confirmed the weight at post office.
      Weight was 3 lbs. 12.01 ounces.
      I priced sending it via Priority mail.
      I used zip 19143 sending to 17603.
      The cost would be $10.55

      My question. I looked into Shippo, they say they can save me dramatically using their service. Not quite sure what it would cost me if I used them in regard to these specific details, will find out tomorrow. Any insight you may be able to give would be appreciated. I did see a dramatic difference in some of the rates on their site. Take care.
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      • Profile picture of the author savidge4
        Originally Posted by Brett Dunbar View Post

        Hey,

        I hope all is well. The box dimensions are 20 x 14 x3.
        I weighed my package and confirmed the weight at post office.
        Weight was 3 lbs. 12.01 ounces.
        I priced sending it via Priority mail.
        I used zip 19143 sending to 17603.
        The cost would be $10.55

        My question. I looked into Shippo, they say they can save me dramatically using their service. Not quite sure what it would cost me if I used them in regard to these specific details, will find out tomorrow. Any insight you may be able to give would be appreciated. I did see a dramatic difference in some of the rates on their site. Take care.
        eBay has a calculator you can use to get a base rate... you are not selling within eBay so you obviously can't use their rate. you can find that here ( https://www.ebay.com/shp/Calculator?...45375397262459 ) you do have to log into a eBay account to use. it This shipment would cost $8.34

        Looking at Pirate Ship ( you can go onto see rates without logging in BTW ) your shipment would have been $8.34

        Looking at Shippo the price is $8.24

        Looking at this as a business.. well, lets say looking at this as if it was MY business. I would be offering FREE shipping - meaning you include the cost of shipping into the price.

        If you look at this: ( https://www.pirateship.com/usps/zone-map ) you can scroll your mouse pointer over towards where you live, it will then map out the 8 USPS Zones. Your total postage is determined by weight and how many zones it passes through.

        For YOU California is basically your most expensive place to ship ( Hawaii and Alaska ship at the same rate ) . So you can use a zip like 90210 to determine your MAX shipping expense. This would be the cost I would use to determine my Product price including shipping. ( on Pirate Ship the cost is $20.77 )

        so what then happens is you will win some and break even on some. If you ship closer, you are calculating an expense of $20.77 and as you found out the cost was $10.55 going kinda next door. thats $10.22 "extra" that you would make. Make sense?

        Hope that Helps!
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        • Profile picture of the author Brett Dunbar
          Hello Fellow Warrior,

          Fantastic information, I really appreciated it.
          I have looked at prices via Shippo and their rates seem pretty good across the board. If I'm understanding what you are saying, increase the price of my product $20.77; therefore, regardless of where I'm shipping. This gives the appearance of free shipping, although its already built into the price.

          It actually seems pretty smart, although it would raise the cost of my items.
          It's a give and take as you stated (shipping is free!).
          Truly gives me something to ponder.
          I thank you for the suggestion.

          I'm going to add a caveat!

          Talking with a representative from stamps.com. I was told that my item would qualify for media mail @ a cost of $5.08. Based on same shipping destination presented in previous email. This has a 7day shipping time. If this is true, do you think the savings would be worth the extended travel time.
          Or playing Devil's Advocate, should my customers expect a faster shipping time? Is this not worth it because my aim should be to get my product in my customers hands as soon as possible?

          Additional sidebar...
          How do you display shipping rates on your website if you have one?
          Of course, this would not be necessary if I offer free shipping.
          My website will be on the Wix platform.
          Is it sufficient to simply state that standard carrier rates will be applied to your purchase? I know certain aspects of the site are only available when you go live. This may be the case in my situation. I'm about to reach out to them.

          Appreciate your thoughts, have a wonderful day!
          Brett
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          • Profile picture of the author savidge4
            Originally Posted by Brett Dunbar View Post

            If I'm understanding what you are saying, increase the price of my product $20.77; therefore, regardless of where I'm shipping. This gives the appearance of free shipping, although its already built into the price.
            Yes, this is exactly what I am saying. Free Shipping is a buyer preference. a statistically 20% increase - buyers preference. 2 of the exact same item sold side by side one with and one without free shipping and the free shipping will sell more.

            I have run tests on this personally, and the Free Shipping option costs more, and it out sells the one with added shipping, and its more than 20% more likely. My last personal test was sold 19 with free shipping, and none without - and the free shipping offer was $5.00 more ( and this was done like a month ago )

            Originally Posted by Brett Dunbar View Post

            Talking with a representative from stamps.com. I was told that my item would qualify for media mail @ a cost of $5.08. Based on same shipping destination presented in previous email. This has a 7day shipping time. If this is true, do you think the savings would be worth the extended travel time.
            I would say NO, frames and Blankets can not be sent Media Mail. And we are talking not only NO but heck NO. The ONLY way I could see this happening is IF you had an educational reference chart type thing in the frame. You can see the specifics of sending Media Mail here: ( https://about.usps.com/notices/not121/not121_tech.htm )

            Media mail does take a long time to send. 7 to 10 days seems to be the norm as of late... and I have had a few that took longer.

            The other thing to consider is "Insurance". Shipping with Priority, $50 insurance is included. Sooner or later you will get a damaged shipment... it happens - NOT OFTEN, but it does happen, and its nice knowing that such a thing is at least somewhat covered. The customer gets a refund - or a replacement, and YOU get the value of the item, up to $50

            Originally Posted by Brett Dunbar View Post

            Additional sidebar...
            How do you display shipping rates on your website if you have one?
            Of course, this would not be necessary if I offer free shipping.
            My website will be on the Wix platform.
            Is it sufficient to simply state that standard carrier rates will be applied to your purchase? I know certain aspects of the site are only available when you go live. This may be the case in my situation. I'm about to reach out to them.
            Wix does have a postage calculator: ( https://support.wix.com/en/article/w...tion-with-usps ) Good only to and from US destinations. But FREE SHIPPING removes all of that hassle.

            I just have to ask... do you already have a social media account or the like that you will be able to pull traffic to your website?

            Building a site and thinking ok now im going to roll in dough, is not really how it works... you have to be able to draw traffic to the site, for people to buy. If you do not already have something in place that can send traffic over to this... I would think twice - three - five times before building a WIX site.

            I would be putting up a Facebook / Instagram Store, I would be listing on eBay, Etsy... anywhere there is pre existing traffic - other than Amazon. As long as you are priced right for what you have, you should have sales in days vs months and months later.
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      • Profile picture of the author DWolfe
        Originally Posted by Brett Dunbar View Post

        .
        I priced sending it via Priority mail.
        .
        Have you priced First Class mail ?
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        • Profile picture of the author savidge4
          Originally Posted by DWolfe View Post

          Have you priced First Class mail ?
          Its over 16oz and would no longer be able to ship with First Class.
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  • Profile picture of the author dave_hermansen
    Start off fulfilling yourself and when it becomes too much, use a fulfillment center like Fulfillment By Amazon (you don't have to sell on Amazon to use their fulfillment center solutions) or use a company like ShipBob, Deliverr or eFulfillment Service.

    Using a fulfillment center will always cost slightly more than doing it yourself but the real savings is in your time - something that should be worth far more spent building your business vs. just maintaining it.
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    • Profile picture of the author Brett Dunbar
      Thanks Dave,
      Makes sense, I guess that little bit of trepidation creeps in, but I came this far.
      I always said I would rather crash and fail, than to wonder what may have been!
      Thanks for the insight.
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  • Profile picture of the author rickeyshirts
    Congrats!!!!!!!

    If it's just you doing it, wait until the orders come in on a regular basis and then use a third party...UNLESS you have the budget for it and can budget it for a few years in advance.

    Custom made box is snazzy...good job!

    If you have more orders than you expect, GOOD! and then you can tell your customers that so many orders came in and to be patient...if that happens, you'll have to create a youtube video so people can hear you speak about the trust you've built with people.

    Yes, it is a lonely process but you'll meet someone or you can just go to tinder and find a suitor...lol

    I offered this idea to another client he was stating that the fees wont offset his costs...(then again that was for international products being made outside us and then he had to pay all the duty fees and such) and so when it came to the amazon fullfill, it didnt work out for a decent profit margin.

    i told him it is volume.

    brett: if you have a lot of inventory, do the amazon fulfill as well as ebay and walmart
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  • Profile picture of the author Brett Dunbar
    Thank you so much for your insight.
    I really appreciate it!
    You real funny
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  • Profile picture of the author Frank Donovan
    Brett, hover over your user name in the black toolbar at the top and click on "View Classic". Then you'll be able to use the quote function and we'll all know who you're responding to in your posts.
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  • Profile picture of the author savidge4
    As much as I get the whole let a fulfillment center take care of the dirty work as it were... I really don't get it. In order to send say Amazon product, you have to at the very least ( and there is more involved than this ) but the very least print a barcode to stick on the package. ok fine, then you have to box how ever many, and then you have to ship it to Amazon..sure at a discounted rate - but this is an expense none the less.

    So here is what gets me... If I am shipping an item... I am going to ship the same day or at the most the next day correct? When you look at Amazons rate card ( https://m.media-amazon.com/images/G/...ees_6_1_21.pdf ) they use the terms "Standard", "Expeditied", and "Priority" - 3 to 5 business days, 2 business days, and Next business day... They make this seem as tho, you are paying for the speed of shipment. Uh NO... you are paying for the speed of fulfillment.

    So not only does it cost you time and labor to get it ready for Amazon to fulfill... you have to ship it there, and then the expense before there is a "Storage fee" for the "Priority" service is a minimum $12.80. - lets really break this down.. printing a UPC label to put on each product box, or print a postage label? is there a time savings?

    I would venture to say that the expense" above and beyond self fulfilling is at a minimum of $5.00 per unit... I would be finding a Stay at home mom or the like to come in a few hours a day or as needed... you could pack and ship 10 units in an hour easy.. If Amazon does this, it would be $128.00.. if you had someone come in and do this we are talking a $50.00 savings ( before the cost of labor )

    And this for me..is a REAL important factor... The idea ( for me ) in any business is to grow... Growth in most terms means profit, but it usually entails employees. The sooner you can legit justify an "Employee".. the sooner you make the mind shift towards growth. YOU the business owner are no longer growing for YOURSELF... you have the responsibility of EMPLOYEES now. and THAT is a huge shift.
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    • Profile picture of the author dave_hermansen
      Originally Posted by savidge4 View Post

      As much as I get the whole let a fulfillment center take care of the dirty work as it were... I really don't get it. In order to send say Amazon product, you have to at the very least ( and there is more involved than this ) but the very least print a barcode to stick on the package. ok fine, then you have to box how ever many, and then you have to ship it to Amazon..sure at a discounted rate - but this is an expense none the less.

      So here is what gets me... If I am shipping an item... I am going to ship the same day or at the most the next day correct? When you look at Amazons rate card ( https://m.media-amazon.com/images/G/...ees_6_1_21.pdf ) they use the terms "Standard", "Expeditied", and "Priority" - 3 to 5 business days, 2 business days, and Next business day... They make this seem as tho, you are paying for the speed of shipment. Uh NO... you are paying for the speed of fulfillment.

      So not only does it cost you time and labor to get it ready for Amazon to fulfill... you have to ship it there, and then the expense before there is a "Storage fee" for the "Priority" service is a minimum $12.80. - lets really break this down.. printing a UPC label to put on each product box, or print a postage label? is there a time savings?

      I would venture to say that the expense" above and beyond self fulfilling is at a minimum of $5.00 per unit... I would be finding a Stay at home mom or the like to come in a few hours a day or as needed... you could pack and ship 10 units in an hour easy.. If Amazon does this, it would be $128.00.. if you had someone come in and do this we are talking a $50.00 savings ( before the cost of labor )

      And this for me..is a REAL important factor... The idea ( for me ) in any business is to grow... Growth in most terms means profit, but it usually entails employees. The sooner you can legit justify an "Employee".. the sooner you make the mind shift towards growth. YOU the business owner are no longer growing for YOURSELF... you have the responsibility of EMPLOYEES now. and THAT is a huge shift.
      All good points but when you are shipping hundreds of items per day, believe me, that takes a whole lot of time. Also, where you do you store all of that inventory? Even employing "stay at home mom" requires a very dependable employee who isn't going to bug-off when her child is sick, she's sick or there's a family vacation. You may need to hire several of those "moms" when you get to high volume. It also severely limits your free time (and ability to take a vacation) unless you're just going to give her/them a key to your house to come and go as they please.

      Again, fulfillment centers are the only solution if you want real freedom - whether it is personal freedom that you seek or professional freedom to use your time to grow the business instead of just maintaining it. They not only take care of the picking, packing and shipping, but a good one also does the re-ordering when stock reaches a predetermined level or at the very least, automatically notifies you so you can place the order with your supplier.

      Finally, Amazon is just one solution. There are plenty of other fulfillment centers out there that do not require bar codes. We've found that the actual difference in cost between doing it ourselves and using a fulfillment center works out to a couple dollars per package. Our time is worth more than the $20/hour we would save doing it ourselves and so is the inventory space.

      I should also point out that "stay at home mom" is not really staying at home. She is coming to your house or other owned building and performing work. She is, by law, not an independent contractor at that point which means you will have other expenses besides just her pay - accounting and payroll reporting expenses, FICA taxes that you will have to eat half of and workers compensation insurance you are required to purchase in case of an accident on the job (your homeowners insurance will not cover that).
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      • Profile picture of the author savidge4
        Originally Posted by dave_hermansen View Post

        All good points but when you are shipping hundreds of items per day, believe me, that takes a whole lot of time. Also, where you do you store all of that inventory? Even employing "stay at home mom" requires a very dependable employee who isn't going to bug-off when her child is sick, she's sick or there's a family vacation. You may need to hire several of those "moms" when you get to high volume. It also severely limits your free time (and ability to take a vacation) unless you're just going to give her/them a key to your house to come and go as they please.

        Again, fulfillment centers are the only solution if you want real freedom - whether it is personal freedom that you seek or professional freedom to use your time to grow the business instead of just maintaining it. They not only take care of the picking, packing and shipping, but a good one also does the re-ordering when stock reaches a predetermined level or at the very least, automatically notifies you so you can place the order with your supplier.

        Finally, Amazon is just one solution. There are plenty of other fulfillment centers out there that do not require bar codes. We've found that the actual difference in cost between doing it ourselves and using a fulfillment center works out to a couple dollars per package. Our time is worth more than the $20/hour we would save doing it ourselves and so is the inventory space.

        I should also point out that "stay at home mom" is not really staying at home. She is coming to your house or other owned building and performing work. She is, by law, not an independent contractor at that point which means you will have other expenses besides just her pay - accounting and payroll reporting expenses, FICA taxes that you will have to eat half of and workers compensation insurance you are required to purchase in case of an accident on the job (your homeowners insurance will not cover that).
        Bud.. we are talking about the beginning of a business - PROFIT for re-investment is pretty critical at this stage... you start with the desire for "Lifestyle" down the line... but anyone that has started a business can tell you... vacations come a few years down the line.

        We will take the blankets as mentioned in the OP as a starting point. Those would probably fit into a Priority Mail flat rate tyvek envelope. The COST to ship that is $7.80 - The envelope itself is FREE

        There is a rather large gap between $7.80 and $13.85 if not more. $6.00 an item saved if you sell 100 items in a day is $600 - thats $4200 a week, thats $218,400.00 in a year... you just close your online shop for a week or 2, and have yourself one hell of a vacation.

        Employees... $15.00 an hour 8 hours a day works out to $120.00... with the added expenses, taxes, insurances, etc, that employee costs roughly $200 a day. I count in paying for 1 week vacation, and Winter Bonus.

        That $218,400.00 savings buys you 2 employees and pays the rent and electric for a warehouse space.

        The MOMENT you are justifying "its only a few bucks" More often than not you just walked down a path of expense.. that isnt saving you time or money - because where I come from $218,400.00 is NOT a few bucks.

        Might as well told the OP to read "The 4 Hour Work Week" while you were at it.

        And before you go on about how no, its only a few bucks.... so lets cut it to a $3.00 savings that BIG number you just blew gets cut in half... $109,200.00 is still a damn big number to pay for convenience.
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        • Profile picture of the author dave_hermansen
          Originally Posted by savidge4 View Post

          Bud.. we are talking about the beginning of a business - PROFIT for re-investment is pretty critical at this stage... you start with the desire for "Lifestyle" down the line... but anyone that has started a business can tell you... vacations come a few years down the line.

          We will take the blankets as mentioned in the OP as a starting point. Those would probably fit into a Priority Mail flat rate tyvek envelope. The COST to ship that is $7.80 - The envelope itself is FREE

          There is a rather large gap between $7.80 and $13.85 if not more. $6.00 an item saved if you sell 100 items in a day is $600 - thats $4200 a week, thats $218,400.00 in a year... you just close your online shop for a week or 2, and have yourself one hell of a vacation.

          Employees... $15.00 an hour 8 hours a day works out to $120.00... with the added expenses, taxes, insurances, etc, that employee costs roughly $200 a day. I count in paying for 1 week vacation, and Winter Bonus.

          Better check your math, too ... those 2 employees at $200 per day/each are going to cost you $104,000/year and you haven't paid for the warehouse or electricity yet.

          That $218,400.00 savings buys you 2 employees and pays the rent and electric for a warehouse space.

          The MOMENT you are justifying "its only a few bucks" More often than not you just walked down a path of expense.. that isnt saving you time or money - because where I come from $218,400.00 is NOT a few bucks.

          Might as well told the OP to read "The 4 Hour Work Week" while you were at it.

          And before you go on about how no, its only a few bucks.... so lets cut it to a $3.00 savings that BIG number you just blew gets cut in half... $109,200.00 is still a damn big number to pay for convenience.
          Apparently you did not read my original reply to the OP that they should fulfill items themselves until they get to the point that it is too overwhelming. At that point, I suggest a fulfillment center for the reasons I cited in my second reply.

          We've never paid a fulfillment service $13.85 to ship something that would normally cost $7.80. Maybe you're using the wrong fulfillment service!

          You better check your math, too. Those 2 employees at $200/each per day are going to cost you $104,000/year and that's before you have paid for that warehouse and electricty.
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          • Profile picture of the author savidge4
            Originally Posted by dave_hermansen View Post

            We've never paid a fulfillment service $13.85 to ship something that would normally cost $7.80. Maybe you're using the wrong fulfillment service!

            You better check your math, too. Those 2 employees at $200/each per day are going to cost you $104,000/year and that's before you have paid for that warehouse and electricty.
            First of all.. not very often do I use fulfilment... #2 I am using the basic reference of Amazon's cost sheet ( linked above ) for fulfillment... so you apparently dont use Amazon - nor sell on Amazon - its spendy to say the least. When was the last time you got a package in a prepaid priority envelope? It doesnt happen... a 3lb blanket would cost far more with regular priority mail. Remember I do this stuff in house... I KNOW the cost of shipping

            2 employees cost $104,000 and by keeping the shipping in house you are saving $218,400. I did my math correctly, Leaves you $114,000 for a years worth of warehouse and warehouse expenses ( electric, water, internet etc )

            In the short term and at scale it makes absolutely no sense to farm out fulfillment... its a straight up money losing proposition. I personally am in business to make money and not throw it away because something is a hassle or something... You see the math... it adds up fast... scarry fast.

            We didnt even get into the idea of calling FedEx and setting up an appointment with an Acct Manager and getting a better rate. Here is the deal... fulfillment houses are paying less for shipping than what they offer you. They have contracts with these shipping companies... Amazon pays I think its $4.00 per package ( USPS ) regardless of size - and yet the charge per a base rate and scale based on weight... Shipping is a PROFIT Center - it is literally how Amazon, or ANY fulfillment center makes money.

            From what I gather...your running decent sales numbers, I BET if you spent the time, and did the research, you would find a 5 to 6 digit cash cow if you brought those services in house.

            In my experience hands down no questions asked with business' that ship... it is the one area that is least optimized - to the point of saying screw it and spending $200,000 more per year that they shouldn't be, by sending it off to fulfillment.

            Again... im in business to make money... and if it means hiring employees to keep added profits.. by all means that is exactly what I will do. Its not a hassle... its added profit
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            • Profile picture of the author dave_hermansen
              Originally Posted by savidge4 View Post

              Again... im in business to make money... and if it means hiring employees to keep added profits.. by all means that is exactly what I will do. Its not a hassle... its added profit
              I've been there and done that, fulfilling orders from home. You are literally tied to your business 24/7 and can't even take a vacation.

              I get it. We all do things differently and have different priorities and different work/life balance goals. Sometimes, enough is enough, though. After a while, more money becomes less life.

              Perhaps there is a middle ground - especially for folks who want a far more flexible schedule for their family or who do not want strangers in their house. ...

              Fulfill yourself until you just can't (or don't want to) handle the time and effort involved. Then, use a fulfillment service until things really explode. When you are in the hundreds of orders per day, hire a manager and have them manage your own warehouse.

              And no, we never have used Amazon for fulfillment. There are far less expensive options out there.
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  • Profile picture of the author Brett Dunbar
    I want to thank you guys, you have been so helpful.
    I decided to ship the product myself which is the way I was leaning towards at least for now. If I get overwhelmed, I guess that's a good thing!
    Which leads to my next question - shipping.

    Has anyone on here used Shippo or are aware of another way in which I may be able to get cheaper rates for my product. My shipping supplies just arrived. I need to put a package together so I can see how much it will weigh. This has been a process Warriors but I'm finally ready to step into the world. Any help you may be able to give me would be appreciated as always.
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    • Profile picture of the author savidge4
      Originally Posted by Brett Dunbar View Post

      I want to thank you guys, you have been so helpful.
      I decided to ship the product myself which is the way I was leaning towards at least for now. If I get overwhelmed, I guess that's a good thing!
      Which leads to my next question - shipping.

      Has anyone on here used Shippo or are aware of another way in which I may be able to get cheaper rates for my product. My shipping supplies just arrived. I need to put a package together so I can see how much it will weigh. This has been a process Warriors but I'm finally ready to step into the world. Any help you may be able to give me would be appreciated as always.
      I would look at Pirate ship ( https://www.pirateship.com/ )

      Once you get going, I would contact FedEX and have an accounts specialist stop by. You can also dig up the benefits from Credit Cards or AAA or USAA ( if you are a member ) and many of these have discounted rates for UPS or FedEX.

      I have an "Account" with FedEX, and have about a 45% savings just as an example
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    • Profile picture of the author dave_hermansen
      Originally Posted by Brett Dunbar View Post

      I want to thank you guys, you have been so helpful.
      I decided to ship the product myself which is the way I was leaning towards at least for now. If I get overwhelmed, I guess that's a good thing!
      Which leads to my next question - shipping.

      Has anyone on here used Shippo or are aware of another way in which I may be able to get cheaper rates for my product. My shipping supplies just arrived. I need to put a package together so I can see how much it will weigh. This has been a process Warriors but I'm finally ready to step into the world. Any help you may be able to give me would be appreciated as always.
      I would check out Xpert Fulfillment, but again, not until you have reached the point where you can no longer fulfill orders, yourself.
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      My PROVEN ecommerce process, as seen on: Fox Business News, the NY Times & Flippa
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  • Profile picture of the author Serene Carmen
    Hi Brett. You will need to find a 3PL. It's also not as easy finding a 3PL willing to do custom packaging. There are a few that will. Right now until you should stick with your plan to fulfill orders yourself until you have consistent sales.
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  • Profile picture of the author dave_hermansen
    We typically either offer free shipping on everything or free shipping for orders above $xx.

    We do, however, let the product niche dictate what we do to a large extent. If the top 3-4 websites selling what we sell are not offering free shipping and tacking it on at the end, there's usually a reason. Before we know exactly what we are doing (which is always the case with a brand new niche), we take our cue from the established websites in the niche who have been around long enough to have hopefully figured out the best way.

    What you might want to do is build the shipping into the price and offer free shipping at that 7 day shipping timeframe. Then, if people want it faster, give them the offer to pay more for the other service:

    Free Standard Shipping (7-10 day delivery)
    Priority Shipping (3-4 day delivery) +$5.99
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    My PROVEN ecommerce process, as seen on: Fox Business News, the NY Times & Flippa
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    • Profile picture of the author Brett Dunbar
      Hello Dave,

      Great advice, I really appreciate you taking the time to reply to my post.
      You guys are making me stronger, and I appreciate it!
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  • Profile picture of the author Brett Dunbar
    Hello My Friend,

    Thanks so much for the dialogue and the real-world knowledge.
    I am going to go with the free shipping advice that you provided. As far as your other question is concerned, I already have a Wix site. I started building this site in 2020 before a serious medical crisis put things on hold. I actually took my site live a few days ago.

    I'm positioned to go live on Etsy, just have to push the button. I'm in the process of doing a couple of things. I always thought I could market a product, make people desire something that didn't exist before. Time to put my money where my mouth is

    I'm far from arrogant, please don't take this that way, but I don't plan on losing. I have more planned than what's on the website.
    If some of the things that I have planned roll my way, it will only make my product better. I'm selling an experience not just a product, at least that's what I'm attempting to do.

    Ultimately this concept has a deeper purpose, I've always said, even if I sold just one and reached just one person - then my promise has been fulfilled. (edit- do not put links in posts, please).


    Mod edit: WF is not a 'review this product for me' site. You can ask what other use for a specific purpose but not a list of 'is this any good' questions about products sold online.
    Thank you.
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  • Profile picture of the author savidge4
    So we are totally transparent here.. I was PM'd the web address.

    Im going to start with some real basics here... Your page needs an "About Us" and "Contact Us" page... to think you are going to get listed favorably with Google..you have to understand and play by Googles rules.. those 2 pages are a part of those rules.

    I understand that you have a page that is technically a "About Us" page, but its not labeled "About us... again im just giving you the "rules"

    I am going to assume you have a registered business name and a bank account. The 1st thing you want to do is get your business a "Google Business Profile" You cant use the website for this... But because you have an address listed on your website... I would use that. You then have the opportunity once that is set up to display your products on your business profile something like the top portion of this article ( https://pcgdigital.com/blog/google-m...s-vs-services/ )

    Starting with this... a profile listing will put you in Googles "Local" web directory - as in - get you listed in days. ( and we are playing by the rules ) So now you are a actual business right? what do you think that does in regards to favor with Google for regular search content - it gives you a heads up above your competitors.

    Im not going to say 1 way or another if the $29 a month is worth it.. dont know till you try it though... But to me, its right in there with "To good to be true" $29 a month doesnt even buy you hosting with the services I provide.

    Now into some of the nitty gritty. Your about us page ( give them roses ) you are writing like a guy ( how dare you LOL ) Seriously spend an hour or so and look at etsy descriptions of necklaces and dresses and the like.. you will find the writing style to be very um... hmm frilly? Are you married? have a girlfriend? have them write that page for you.

    Etsy in particular... it is literally a skill I worked on for years - to write "frilly" me and my BA in Electronic Engineering just wasnt cutting the mustard. For me it took endless hours of reading "frilly"and practing.

    Your product details: or should I say lack there of. There are 2 sides of the selling process..therre is the sellers side, and then there is the buyers side... YOU have to think from both sides. You can look up terms like "Sellers Avatar" and "Buyers Avatar" to better understand this.

    So looking at this from a "buyers avatar" what questions about the products am I going to ask? What size is the blanket? in Inches and metric please. What its made of? is it a light mediumor heavy weight blanket? is it machine washable? Are you following me here? plenty of questions that need to be answered, for a buyer to KNOW what they are buying... right now it looks like it is being displayed on a plate holder? as in TINY small.

    With Etsy, or eBay or Facebook or Instagram... you have a number of photo spots you can use... on your website the number is endless... You mention with the Frames it comes in a special box... a photo of the box would be nice... a photo of the blanket thrown over a couch? Hanging on the tall wall of a stairwell? in a living room? PUT that product in the minds of the buyer in THEIR house, or their moms house as the case may be. It is YOUR job as a marketer to fill in as many blanks as you can.

    So going to the framed poems... what are you selling? Im going to be straight here... right now you are selling a nice frame and a laser print of a poem... I could replicate the same thing at home for a lot less.

    You need to understand WHY watch this ( ) Simon Sinek. So how does this apply to you? The about us page that needs to be re written from a females perspective... is WHY Your not buying the nice frame... your not buying the custom packaging... your not buying the copyrighted piece of work... you are buying this because you dont want to miss the opportunity while your mother is living to tell her you love her - and that you care Male reasons, feelgood heartstring Female reasons... see the difference?

    And even with that... you still want to include as many photos of each item to display the work... watch the tail end of this video ( ) you can start at like the 10:30 mark. How is he displaying the frames? Even a phot of a young child handing the framed image to a mother... following me? The craftmanship of the frame... in its place... and the act of giving...

    Right now you are SELLING... and you need to be MARKETING - and that marketing is what will sell this for you.

    Lets talk about "Traffic' its a tough one to put your finger on... it seems easy enough, and I think it is... but I know what I am doing right? Above is a post that your link was removed ( again playing by rules ) BUT the rules do allow for you to go into your profile and add a website address in the "About Me" section of your profile ( right here on wf ).

    Its all of the little things that over time build this HUGE internet "Web" of references to your site, that sells your goods.

    I would not stop with Your site and Etsy... I would list this Facebook, eBay, and Instagram.

    On Instagram, I would share photos of your framed work and blanket in different settings...I would also curate images of different "Mom" type images.

    I didn't look back if I suggested this or not, but you might want to look at Gary Vaynerchuk's book Jab Jab Jab right hook. It goes in depth to the principle of giving, giving, and giving to an audience before the ASK? IE the sale.

    Hope that Helps!
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    • Profile picture of the author Brett Dunbar
      Hey,

      I want to thank you. I really appreciate you taking the time to share your thoughts. I'm just seeing your message because I didn't think it went through. I received a message stating that I couldn't ask about a certain product or something like that. I'm going to thoroughly review everything you shared.
      Have a great weekend!

      Brett
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  • Profile picture of the author ansin
    Hey Brett,

    There are many types of software with different features & functions.
    If you want to, you can try out Browntape eCommerce Management Software which will make your process easier.
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  • Profile picture of the author Rastislav Tinák
    Hello,*

    if you don´t want to waste time and resources on logistics, then outsourcing is the best option for you. What do you expect from your business and in what location do you plan to operate? Also, how do you expect the development of your business? Do you plan to expand in upcoming years?

    There are many things to consider while choosing a 3PL partner, but it is easier now, with the internet. [Promotional text removed by moderator]
    I hope, you will find the best solution for you!
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