Questions to Address Before Shipping Your Product
You've already had the "brilliant idea," and you found a way to market it, manufacture it, and package it. Now all you need to do is find a way to ship that "brilliant idea" to your customers. Finding the right shipping company can be a headache, and if you don't know the right steps to take, you will see your profit margins decrease tremendously.
The first question that you need to ask yourself is, "where do I need to ship this "brilliant idea?" Are your customers going to all be domestic, and if so, are you going to be sending it to a specific region? For instance, if you have designed and manufactured hand-warmers, it is very unlikely that you will ever need to ship them to Hawaii or Florida. Are you trying to target customers who live outside the country? All of these questions need to be addressed before you move to the next step.
Once you know where you want to ship your "brilliant idea," you need to figure out how to ship your idea. Is it a product that customers are going to want within in days and needs to shipped via plane, or will they be content receiving the product within a couple of weeks? If the "brilliant idea" will be making its way across the oceans to Asia or Europe, do the customers have a problem with you sending it on a slow boat?
How heavy is your product? Weight plays a big part on how much your freight is going to cost. If your "brilliant idea" is heavy, are your customers willing to pay the added expense of shipping the product. It will be a good idea to play around with your shipping price. Start it high and lower it incrementally to see what price customers feel comfortable paying.
How much of your product are you going to be shipping? If you are going to have thousands, or hundreds of thousands, of units going out each year, you should be able to capitalize on some discount shipping from the freight companies.
Most shipping is negotiable and you should get a quote from several shippers before you decide to go live with your "brilliant idea." I would also recommend avoiding companies that seem "too good to be true."
The important thing to consider is getting your product to your customers in a timely manner. A happy customer will return again and again, but if a shipper messes up their order, the customer will likely see it as a mistake on your part. Find a company that you trust.