How To Make Valentine's Day Shipping a Heartfelt Victory
The next major postal day on the calendar will be here soon: FedEx, UPS and others have already marked February 14 on their calendars as a very busy window. The big carriers ship tens of millions of flowers on Valentine’s Day — UPS alone shipped 89 million of them last year — not to mention chocolates, soft toys and jewelry.
What do all these items have in common? They’re very fragile, extremely time-sensitive and prone to prohibitions. It pays to know how to ship them safely and to remember that your carrier has a responsibility to be extra careful this Valentine’s Day.
Choice advice for secure sweets
Successful delivery of the classic Valentine’s Gift — chocolates — requires two things from a shipper.
The first is to offer your customers the fastest possible shipping options for edible items and to try to ship out confectionaries at the start of the week.
The second is to go all-out on providing the sturdiest packaging you possibly can. Bubble wrapping these fragile favorites is a good start, and so is securing them inside the toughest packaging material possible. If you really want to go the extra mile, add an extra layer of temperature control by including cool gel packs, but don’t forget that excess cold can ruin chocolates, too.
It’s a sticky situation to get right and choosing the correct carrier conditions can make all the difference. For example, UPS notes that there’s no problem shipping dry-iced packages via ground, but there may be issues doing so by air.
Lastly, make sure you have a carrier arrangement where someone signs for the chocolates. Leaving them outside on a doorstep to slowly liquidize, harden or be stolen will only sink that special opening moment.
Getting jewelry just right
Proper packaging is once again the key to success here. A sturdy outer box for the item itself is a must, as are protective materials like packing peanuts, airbags, foam and even newspaper to cushion the jewelry in transit. Investing in small plastic bags for the jewelry – into which they’re placed before being placed in the presentation box – is another wise move to prevent damage.
When a jewelry box gets underway, it’s best not to label its contents externally. Package theft is already rampant in the U.S. and if a thief sees a box announcing its valuable contents, they’re far more likely to steal it. That’s especially true if the item is sent with no signed-for requirement and is left vulnerable outside a home.
Package theft is affecting 31% to 38% of deliveries. If you’re shipping to New York, watch out! 90,000 packages a day vanish there. Always ensure someone will be available to sign for jewelry at the destination.
Know what your business can and can’t ship
Don’t disappoint your customers by offering Valentine’s Day gifts that your carrier won’t even touch. Champagne would be a lovely present, but UPS only ships alcohol under certain circumstances. See their list of prohibited articles.
Flowers and certain forms of jewelry are among FedEx’s list of prohibited items, which you can fully review here. Likewise, DHL won’t ship jewelry worth over $100 among several other gift types. We recommend checking your local DHL website for more region-specific details.
USPS has a prohibited list as long as the others, but there are variations on this theme from carrier to carrier. Short of taking the package to the customer yourself, your shipping department will have to carefully evaluate which carrier will get your goods there.
Once you’ve found them, you’ll have to keep a close eye on their performance to be sure they don’t let you down. That’s where we’ve got the services you’ll love.
Shippers can treat themselves to shipping insurance
Why should your customers get all the great Valentine’s gifts? By adding 71lbs shipping insurance to your arsenal of package protecting tools, you’ll be ready to handle the financial sting of carriers who were careless with fragile items. We don’t just cover the replacement cost of the items — we also refund your postage costs.
We do a lot more to guarantee your shipping refunds and streamline your logistics. Connect with us at the link below for the start of a beautiful relationship.
At 71lbs, we focus on two things: a) helping customers save money on shipping, and b) helping customers understand their shipping costs. We provide refunds and savings in shipping insurance, freight and imports, among other services. Our automated dashboard displays easy-to-understand shipping costs and insights so you can make better business decisions. Drop by the contact page to get in touch!
KEEP UP WITH THE LATEST
Get the best tips, stats, and resources on the shipping and logistics industry, delivered straight to your inbox.