Many market conditions are forcing us to raise our shipping rates. In the new year, we will receive the data for any USPS rate changes. USPS, despite current issues, is still statistically the best carrier for us. UPS and FedEx cannot offer us the deals that larger shippers receive and using a shipping aggregator like ShipStation will still not bring the rates as low. Such services also carry a monthly fee that offsets any savings we could see for the volume we ship.
Not only are shipping rates increasing, but the materials we use in packaging your orders for shipping has significantly increased. items like tape, envelopes and boxes are 3x what they were just 2 years ago. While for some orders we rely upon USPS Priority Mail, which offers us the use of free boxes from USPS, we are finding that they are not always the best fit and can cause us to use more “void fill” packing materials.
Currently, our average USPS rate paid, not including boxes, is roughly $8.15. Factor in the other materials needed to securely ship the package it reaches over $9.00
We have already seen new rates for USPS Priority Mail that has taken effect since the start of the new year. The increase is $0.30 over previous rate for a package less than 16 ounces for delivery within the same zone.
- Standard USPS Flat Rate Shipping is $8.00 for most items. Higher weight items (Candles, 12oz Liquid Soaps) will add $1 more, making it $9.00.
- Value Free Shipping threshold has been raised to an order minimum of $79.00 (cart subtotal) to earn the free shipping.
- Free Shipping will remain available for all Primp+JÖL Club Pro members.
We may look into moving away from Flat Rate and go to actual cost of postage. While this may lead to a savings for those closer to our location, those in more distant zones will pay substantially more for shipping. The new posted rates we expect to be available in January would be the catalyst.
To avoid raising the Shipping Fee any further, we may implement price increases for many products with tighter margins that cost more to ship. A rule of averages may help us avoid unilateral price increases and allow our more profitable items to carry the burden to allow the less profitable items to retain their value price.
We are strongly considering ending subscriptions. Although these were much requested, they have not been well utilized once we introduced them. The system support for subscription items has a flaw that will allow those that purchased the subscription along with other items and received Value Free Shipping to always get free shipping each time we ship a subscription refill. When the subscription item is also discounted this generates a loss for us that we cannot permit to continue. We are looking into why this situation occurs with the developer. Until then we find a resolution, we are requiring subscription items to be an isolated transaction, ordered separately from any other items.
If we see our sales trends to continue to grow as they have, we may look into partnering with UPS if we can obtain better rates. We would add UPS as an option and not the default as they are not an ideal carrier for those who live in multi unit buildings that see an increase of lost or stolen packages. To protect us, any shipment we ship outside of USPS will be at the customer’s risk. UPS & FedEx will not ensure actual and lawful delivery to the customer and are permitted to leave your package anywhere they feel like, if they leave it all, and as long as they say it was delivered we have no means to recoup losses. Insurance will not protect us or you, as the package is considered delivered with the loss occurring after it was delivered. Requiring a signature does not make this any less problematic as both UPS and FedEx have been claiming it was signed for when it was not. While these carriers are citing the pandemic as the cause of these issues, such problems are systematic and ongoing long before the pandemic started.
Ultimately our goal is to ensure you pay a fair price for all goods and services we offer and that they get to you in a safe and reliable method. In our nearly 8 years of doing business, we have rarely raised our shipping fees despite annual increases to what we pay. It genuinely pains us to have to consider making any changes to our shipping rates as they can negatively effect the perception of value to our brands.
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