IN THE COMMUNITY

To Ship or Not to Ship – Best Shipping Practices For Your Ebay Items

In my ebay store, The NK Marketing Store, I sell a wide range of items in terms of size.  I have small jewelry items like charms, necklaces, and bracelets.  I have medium size items like books, albums, and antique toys.  I have large items like computers, stereos, and marine parts.  Then, I have extra large items like treadmills, bikes, outboard motors, and fitness machines.  On ebay, you have the option to ship or not to ship your items.  You can elect to have your customers pickup only, no shipping.  Or, you can set up shipping for your small to extra large items.  These are some of the things you should consider if you decide to ship your items on ebay.

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If you have a store on ebay, you can set up a wide range of shipping policies.  You can do this in your seller dashboard or while you are listing an item.  There are options pre-set for shipping companies that can fit your package’s needs.  UPS, Fed-EX, DHL, and the United States Post Office (USPS) are all great options for small to medium size items.  Each of these companies (UPS, Fed-Ex, DHL, USPS) have size and weight restrictions, so it is best to check with those companies as to what their size and weight limitations are.  If you decide to use one of these companies, you can select the country or countries that you will ship to, you can create a template for the size of the box, the weight of the box, so your customers can see how much shipping will be.  This is a great option for packages small to medium because your buyer will know ahead of time what the shipping rates will be.  This helps close sales and is a preferred method in my ebay store.

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What if your package exceeds the weight or size limitations of UPS or USPS?  You would need to use a freight option instead.  Freight options are for packages that weigh over 150 lbs. and have dimensions too large for a USPS, Fed-Ex driver to handle.  The freight option involves packaging your item with a pallet or box for pickup purposes.  Freight options can be set up with local freight brokers as well as national companies like R & L Carriers, UPS Freight, and Old Dominion Freight.  Additional equipment or resources such as forklifts, pallet jacks, and loading docks make shipping your freight much easier.  If you do not have those options, you might consider the pickup only option.

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If you are planning on shipping your small to medium items, make sure you have a wide range of boxes.  I use boxes from the grocery store, incoming packages to the house, and from my warehouse complex.  In addition, I have a good supplies of packaging materials such as bubble wrap, packing peanuts, and air bags.  Packing your item with a healthy supply of packing materials helps ensure your package will arrive the way it left.  Damage happens, people are human, so no packing materials and no packing method is 100% full proof.   However, if you do your job and pack the item so it is secure in the box, is not moving around, is not stuffed in there like a sardine, and the box is mostly intact, you should have a successful shipment to your customer.

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Also, if you are planning on shipping your large to extra large items, make sure you have a supply or source for pallets.  There are wooden and plastic pallets.  Pallet sizes vary as do the condition of the pallets.  Check the pallet on both sides and flip it over to make sure there are no broken or damaged pieces.  Using a secure pallet is the first step in getting your freight shipped properly.  Next, you need to select a pallet that is at least the size, if not greater, than the item you are shipping.  Most freight companies will not pickup a pallet with an item that is larger than the pallet, for safety and procedural purposes.  It is best to use a larger pallet than needed to reduce damage during freight.  Again, human error can happen during the time it leaves your facility until it gets to its final destination.  Once the pallet has been chosen and the freight is on the pallet, you can then secure your item to the pallet via strapping, lag bolts, zip ties, or shrink wrap.  Protect your freight with bubble wrap, cardboard, plywood, or other packaging materials.  Cover the corners and any sensitive parts of your freight and you are on your way to a successful packing job.

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For more information on best practices for shipping items on Ebay, contact me at the North Kingstown Marketing Company.  I have been selling on ebay for 12 years and have shipped items as small as a pin and as large as a hot tub.  You can reach me at thenkmarketing@gmail.com or by calling 401-583-7171.  If you would like, fill out the contact form below and I will get back to you.

 

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