Shipping Guide for Online Sales

By Scott Tetz, Owner of

There’s a big shift in the way people look for parts. You used to be able to put a small ad in the Yellow Pages and the phone would ring. I recently had a customer ask me if he should advertise in the Yellow Pages. I thought he was joking but he wasn’t. I told him I haven’t seen a Yellow Pages book in 10 years.

People are using the internet more and more to find what they are looking for. Our traffic continues to grow year after year. The customers we add to (TPI) say, “This is like a light switch for sales.”

The above being said, you need to be able to ship parts to accommodate orders. For those companies who don’t ship parts, this is for you. Here’s a step by step guide to get you up and running fast:

1. Get in the habit of weighing and measuring the part when you add it to TPI. Its a bit more work up front but saves you time when you get the order.
2. Buy shipping supplies, like boxes, packing tape, and/or pallets. This doesn’t cost a lot but will save you a ton of time hunting for shipping materials.
3. Figure out who you will use to ship. See the sales rep, talk about pricing. Try a few shipments.
4. Our customers add shipping to the prices they charge. Some even mark up the shipping a few percent to make up for packaging the product. On larger items they charge for pallets and other prep for the parts.
5. Its best to stay away from shipping to other countries until you get the basics down. When you ship to other countries its better to ship smaller parts and use DHL or UPS. They do the customs clearing for you although there may be more forms to fill out.

Remember you may get a few shipments back. Use these as a learning source to ask better questions on orders you ship. After you get the basics down, train someone else to manage shipping. This allow you to move to another area of the business.

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