FREE(?) Shipping

Published On: January 9th, 2019|Categories: Company News|

All during the holiday season and even now we are bombarded with ads for products with the added bonus, “and shipping is always free!!”.

Such a statement implies that the seller is waiving the shipping cost and not charging us. It has to be that, because last I checked, shipping companies are still charging for their services. UPS filed revenues of almost $66 billion dollars, FedEx $65 billion dollars, the USPS $70 Billion, all increases YOY.  

Those kind of numbers don’t seem to sync with all the ads claiming to not charge us for shipping. Are we really that gullible to think that retailers are shipping us the items for free regardless of consideration of size or weight? They both certainly matter to our bill when you take an item to be shipped to a relative or friend.

True, there may not be an entry on the invoice where the shipping charges would be listed. That would mean for the majority of retailers, the shipping is being factored in somewhere. Retail companies have profit margins to maintain, and while perhaps a few are willing to hedge margin and gain some market share or move product, it is a short term proposition to achieve short term goals. Anyone claiming to offer free shipping all the time, is paying for shipping themselves based on the numbers above, and they are covering that cost somewhere in the sale price.

The point of all this is that when you receive a quotation for tooling and product, it is necessary to assess whether that price is logical or perhaps has some hidden issues. When you receive multiple quotes that vary substantially, it’s worth investigating. Either there was a misunderstanding, or there may truly be a skill or knowledge that explains the differential. Accepting that lower “free shipping” price may lead to disappointment down the road. For you, but more importantly for your organization.

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