How you reduce shipping costs can impact the profitability of your business. As a business owner, you can opt to raise your prices to compensate for today's higher shipping costs. But if you're smart, you'll avoid this trap, as it will make you less competitive in the long run. On the other hand, if you "eat" these costs, you'll report lower profits. Don't like being between a rock and hard place? Try these cost-cutting techniques to save on shipping costs.
Use your business credit card. Shipping services paid with "plastic" can result in some hefty discounts to reduce shipping costs. If you hold an Advanta (ADVNB) business card, you can save up to 25% on DHL standard delivery rates. Better still, using those business rewards cards may also earn you discounts on shipping, even cash back or frequent-flier miles. Still not convinced? American Express' (AXP) small-business credit cards come with a bonus pack of rewards—things like cash back, discounted dining and entertainment purchases and flier miles, even a 5 percent savings on FedEx's express and ground shipping services. Not bad a way to save on shipping costs.
Ahh, the benefits of Electronic Postage. If you really want to reduce shipping costs, switch to electronic postage. When you buy postage online using such providers as Click-N-Ship, Endicia, Pitney Bowes and Stamps.com, you can get a 3 percent price reduction on Express Mail. If you're using Priority Mail, the savings jumps to an average of 3.5 percent. Additional discounts apply for higher volume shipments. Yes, you'll pay a monthly fee for these plans, but the savings are usually sizeable enough to offset the cost. And if you routinely send out a high volume of mail and packages, you'll really save on shipping costs.