How To Keep Your Prints Safe In Transit
In our era of ecommerce, using Etsy and eBay selling for our crafts and prints has become a norm, and there is a lot of focus on being able to use our best practices for shipping in order to make sure we retain the trust of our valuable customers. Your hard work needs to be protected, as do your customers’ investments into your products, so you must ensure that you know just how to keep your prints safe in transit from your home business.
Using A Private Courier
Although you can’t guarantee how your packages will be handled, private couriers can prove to be more reliable in shipping and handling than domestic mail systems. It is even harder to say which would be the best for your business to use, but trust me – it is more likely that you will end up having a little more trouble with a domestic service due to their far higher volume of parcel intake.
Your business cannot afford to send out reprints, which can be a waste of your money and a cause for concern to your customers if goods arrive damaged. Keeping a private courier in mind – even those who specialise in large prints and frames! – may be the better option for your customers. If you can include the cost of shipping in your price, it may be worth taking the courier option.
Always give your customers a choice if not. Some may appreciate an option to have their purchase arrive safer and quicker.
Choose The Right Materials
Something that a lot of fledgling ecommerce store owners lack in is knowledge of which products work best for your shipping. There are three elements of a package you need to consider:
- Outer Box or Envelope
- Inside Protective Packaging
- Secure Tape
Simply having a courier won’t get your print very far in transit. Using cardboard boxes is the most valuable and secure way to keep your crafts protected during the transit process, and depending on the size of your items, can hold more than one to be much more economical. Double-wall cardboard should always be used to give your items additional protection from being crushed.
Inside your box, think about the amount of protection your items need. More fragile items and those in transit with space inside the outer packaging may need some added ‘padding’. Air-filled plastic bags have become hugely popular in the craft-making community for their simplicity and protection that gives a soft, unobtrusive barrier to your items.
Even more-so, if you are of the green and eco-conscious crafting group like myself, you may want to try using biodegradable packing peanuts. Packaging made entirely of potato starch? Innovative and great for the environment, too!
Of course, tape is another challenge for some – but it is multi-purpose and, actually, is useful for more than just making sure your boxes, print tubes, and envelopes are sealed securely. Tape comes in a variety of styles, colours, and patterns that you can choose from that can be used in multiple tape crafts, or for creating more accurate angles on paintings for prints.
The opportunities are endless, and your items won’t be leaving their boxes any time soon!
One of the most difficult challenges we face is distributing our crafts without being able to protect them from weather damage. This can be a disaster for anybody working with paper or paint, and unless your prints are laminated, you could be in serious trouble.
That doesn’t have to be the case, however! Simply take time to ensure your items are fully wrapped in a waterproof coating. Plastics, bubble wrap, or even some forms of nail polish to seal up any openings could help. An outer plastic coating around your cardboard boxes may work well, however as they are kept moving, water damage should be minimal inside with them.
Construct Your Business Plan
Don’t start your ecommerce business without knowing what may be in store for you and your customers. Taking time to go the extra mile and ensure their prints and crafts arrive safely could make all the difference between you earning five stars or a negative review. Keep it simple, or jazz up your packaging to give that ‘wow’ factor. Your prints deserve it!
Megan Thomson is a Content Writer for Ferrari Packaging, and specialises in creating her own hand-painted water pastel works to sell at crafts fairs and online.
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