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Thoughts on shipping

Posted on 2007.08.22 at 01:36

I am uploading a heeyooooooge video (109 MB) onto Google Videos right now, so I guess I'll ramble for awhile to kill time.

I lowered my combined shipping costs today. I've been in the online buying/selling game for 7 years, but I've never had to figure out till now how to reasonably price shipping for individual items when they are sold together. Turns out that $2 per item (especially really light items like nursing pads) is WAYYY too much. A friend of mine bought $60 worth of pads from me and got charged almost $20 shipping! I felt really bad, so I threw in two free pads to make up for it, and just now I went into my store and changed each combined shipping cost to only $1 per item.

I hate to think that I might have come across as one of those people who jips customers on shipping just to sneak in a few extra bucks. That's totally not my groove. Like I said, I've been in this game for 7 years now, and I know darn well how much certain items cost to ship, and when I see someone asking more than that amount, I pass them by. I think it's shady and underhanded to blatantly inflate shipping costs, and I'd NEVER do that. My entire store is geared towards moms who can't afford to throw down a big wad of cash for diapers or pads, and ripping them off on shipping is not what I'm about at all.

I also hate when people sneak those few extra dollars in and justify it as "handling/packaging" charges. No sirree, I'm not going to pay you $3 to tape a piece of paper onto a manila envelope and then drive half a mile to drop it off at the post office. Sorry. Heck, look at what I have to go through to mail packages:

-I can't use USPS's pickup service since there is no outgoing mailbox at my house. That means that every. single. stinkin'. little. thing I want to mail, be it a huge box or a regular ol' letter, has to be taken to the post office.

-My printer is out of ink, so I can't use Paypal's pre-made shipping labels. I don't get to just drop my packages off at the counter, nope, I have to wait in line like everyone else.

-I live on the other side of town from the post office, but I don't have a car. So what does that mean? Every time I want to mail something, I load up the stroller and WALK 20 minutes to drop it off, and then another 20 minutes back home. Try doing that twice a week in 90+ degree heat! 

Don't get me wrong, I'm not complaining. I'm just trying to show that even though getting my stuff in the mail is a bit of a pain, I'd never charge people extra for it. I did consider keeping the shipping rate at $2 to make this effort seem more worthwhile (and also to cover the fees Paypal charges me every time someone pays me), but then I realized that if I don't want people to do this to me, why should I do it to them? Especially when someone buys a ton of items and gets charged $2 for each one. That's not fair! So I lowered it. It's the right thing to do.

Sheesh, my video is only half uploaded. I guess I'll hit the Stumble button a few times until it's done.

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