In 2022 the e-commerce consumer electronics industry was worth at least $106 billion US worldwide and it is only expected to soar even further. With the demand for consumer electronics still so strong, there is no doubt that there is a market, and you can take advantage of it! All you need is to know how to make the most of this great opportunity. If you’re in the market for some hints and tips on shipping electronics, then keep reading.
Preparation is vital
To ship electronics the right way, you should start by getting things ready and planning ahead. No matter what electronic shipping you’re planning, it’s good to think before acting.
Step 1: Collect all the user manuals that go along with the item you are shipping. Also, gather all the relevant accessories, such as remote controls and cables. If your items are new, everything should already be in the box. But if you’re selling second-hand goods, this will be a good first step.
Step 2: Look into buying an appropriate level of insurance for the electronics that will be in transit. Transit protection coverage can cover electronics as well as other types of items.
Step 3: When packing electronics, consider using a tracker app or a tracking chip. Using something like this will make it easier to trace any items that become lost.
Read on for tips on how to pack electronics for shipping.
Time to pack
Packaging is always important no matter what you’re shipping, but when you’re shipping electronics your packaging is even more important. As a savvy e-trader you want to cut back on your shipping costs by using the right packaging, but you also want to make sure the item reaches your customer safely. The best way to find the right balance for your electronics packaging and shipping is to establish a process that you can depend on to support you.
- Wrap accessories, such as cables and remote controls, in separate bags. You can bubblewrap those items for added protection. Ideally, fragile items should be wrapped in 2 to 3 inches of protective padding.
- Investing in custom electronics shipping packaging is a good way to drive down the likelihood of your customers receiving damaged items. Electronic items will fit more snugly inside customized boxes tailored to the dimensions of your items, meaning less chance of damage.
- Lower your shipping costs by selecting an infill that is light but still offers good protection.
- Stock up on labels that mark your packages as “FRAGILE”. This is still a highly effective way to remind carriers and couriers to handle your items more gently.
- Don’t skimp on tape! Using good quality tape will help to keep your items secure within their packaging. Your best option is water-activated tape as it forms a strong bond with the surface it is in contact with, and is ideal for electronics shipping packaging.
- If you mainly ship smaller packages, check out our complete guide to small parcel shipping.
Choose a carrier you can trust
There is more to it than how to pack electronics, you should choose a carrier that will deliver maximum efficiency for your customers. Satisfied customers mean fewer claims which can ultimately lead to greater profits for you. So let’s help you pick out the best way to ship electronics.
Electronics Shipping with USPS
USPS offers competitive pricing and high-quality service, and they are an ideal choice for shipping electronics. However, many electronic items contain lithium batteries. These items will not be eligible for USPS’s Ground Service which offers speedier transport.
Electronics Shipping with FedEx
FedEx offers a range of padded packaging to suit different electronic items, which makes them an equally good option for the shipping of electronic devices. If you need to ship large numbers of items or heavier electronic items, then FedEx is definitely a contender.
SFI offers a range of shipping options. See our page to discover more.
How to ship electronics efficiently and cost-effectively
When shipping electronics as part of your business, you need to be looking for little wins that will help to bring down your costs, increase your profits and maximize your customer satisfaction. So let’s take a look at what you need to keep in mind when deciding how to ship electronics.
Just as with anything else you ship, the cost of shipping electronics will depend largely on how much the package in question weighs and measures. Another factor is the distance it needs to travel to get to its intended destination.
As mentioned before, using a filler can affect how much the package weighs, even if it is super-light. However, if the filler helps to protect the item whilst in transit it may be well worth the investment.
Transit times can also differ based on subtle changes to your electronics shipping and packaging options. The weight and the measurements of each package are factors, but your choice of carrier and the delivery option will determine how long it takes the package to reach its destination.
Don’t forget to take weekends and public holidays into consideration. If you go with a carrier that does not deliver on weekends or holidays, it will impact the delivery date you can offer your customers. For instance, USPS does not deliver packages on Sundays. Also, many customers experience delays when the carrier delivering their package is impacted by holidays such as Christmas.
Extra protection when shipping electronics
To give your packages extra protection, you can opt for signature confirmation. A service such as this requires an adult at the address to sign to accept the package. This also helps to protect you from non-delivery claims.
The service will cost more, but it is worth having that extra peace of mind. If no one is around to sign for the package, it can be collected by the customer from the carrier’s local pick-up point.
Electronics packaging shipping insurance
Your carrier should offer an insurance option to cover you for any damage the item sustains whilst in transit, or the loss of the package. Insurance helps to protect you and your customers from damage, and lost or stolen packages. In 2022, at least 49 million Americans had a package stolen from them. The rise of so-called “Porch Pirates” has led to the theft of approximately 260 million packages over 2022.
There are restrictions on what is covered, you’ll need to check with your carrier for detailed information. Generally, you will need to add signature confirmation to qualify for insurance on more valuable items.
It may be less costly to use a third-party insurance option for your electronic shipping. Also, if you need to make a claim, it can be easier to do so with third-party insurance.
International shipping is much like domestic shipping. However, you’ll need to select an international carrier that offers transit via air. Bear in mind the issue of lithium batteries, remember to choose a carrier that will transport items containing them or any other hazardous components by air.Also, be sure to go through all the paperwork necessary for exporting electronic items. Remember that errors or missing information on the paperwork could result in delays at customs. Depending on the ultimate destination of your item, a goods and services tax (GST) might be applicable. See our blog post on customs to find out more about customs.