Re: “Free or Flat Rate Shipping” – Opinions?
The problem with "free" shipping, from a sellers perspective, is that it tends to encourage small orders and penalize large orders. That is opposite of what most sellers really want.
In order to cover the cost of "free" shipping, the price of each product is raised slightly, to cover shipping. But then when a customer prices a large order, he is paying more on each item and may discover that a competitor who prices shipping separately has a lower delivered price for that large order. That differential encourages the customer to place his large order with a competitor. Not good!
If you are selling unique products, or at least those perceived to be somewhat unique, such as queens, then the product sellers reputation likely overrides moderate delivered cost differences with competitors. But if you are selling items that are available at multiple vendors, say for instance wax foundation, then a free shipping scheme discriminates against large orders. One way around that is to make up for it with a volume discount.
I always compare delivered price among competitors. And if a site won't display shipping cost, or requires me to "register" to get a shipping quote, I go elsewhere.
Last edited by Rader Sidetrack; 02-07-2013 at 06:23 PM.
Reason: add more
ultracrepidarian >> noting or pertaining to a person who criticizes, judges, or gives advice outside of his expertise