eCommerce and Shipping Fees

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As a project manager at Beacon, I’m frequently involved in eCommerce implementation projects.  We use the highly popular .NET shopping cart engine AspDotNetStorefront for most of these jobs, due to it ease of use and flexibility.  In the case of shipping fees, though, maybe the software makes it just a bit too easy – since this decision can seriously affect the profitability of your business and requires serious thought and consideration.

AspDotNetStorefront makes setting up shipping fees for a store super simple.  There are a wide variety of “out of the box” choices for shipping fees (of course, with the source code, we can customized these even more as needed):

So which one of these choices is right for YOUR business?  Unfortunately, the short but discouraging answer is that every business is different– in many markets and industries, an extremely large percentage of customers (over 50% according to some estimates) cite shipping fees as the number one reason they abandon their cart.  In other cases, a fairly substantial fee is expected by the consumer, especially when you sell large, fragile or oddly-shaped items.  In any event, not charging the customer adequate shipping fees will impact your bottom line and your business will need to understand and manage the impact.

That being said, here are some basic rules of thumb:

With all of this contradictory advice, you need a partner that can analyze you business and provide good recommendations.  Beacon prides itself on its customer service and will work with you to determine which choice is the right one for you!  In the meantime though, I’ve put together a list of resources that you might want to consider when selecting how your eComm store will charge for shipping.   I hope that you will find these resources useful when considering your specific needs!