If you can save a few cents per item you increase your profits and decrease the customer’s cost . With the price of gas and postage being high, who wants to spend more on postage than you need to?
1) Print your own shipping labels.
One of the best ways to reduce your shipping costs (and save time) is to print your shipping labels through paypal shipping. To save even more time, if you haven’t already linked your eBay account to your PayPal account for shipping, go ahead and link them. You can print your shipping labels through eBay and your postage will still be paid for by your PayPal account.
Printing your labels directly through eBay (or PayPal) saves you money because the cost of shipping PRIORITY flat rate boxes and envelopes is less if you print your postage online AND the best part is the delivery confirmation is FREE when you ship items PRIORITY mail via eBay or PayPal shipping. Delivery confirmation on 1st class, parcel post and media mail is significantly less when you print your postage through eBay and PayPal.
This is one of the most basic ways to save money on your shipping costs, but I’m still surprised at the number of sellers out there who don’t take advantage of this savings.
2) Ship soft items in poly mailers.
When I first started selling on eBay, I shipped almost everything in a box or a bubble mailer. Boxes and bubble mailers add weight to your packaging, which means you pay more postage to ship the item. If you haven’t already tried poly mailers, give them a try. They add about 1/10 of an ounce to the weight of your item. You can ship clothing, plush toys, books, and I’ve even shipped some shoes (mostly sandals, kids shoes, anything light) wrapped in bubble wrap in poly mailers.
3) Utilize PRIORITY flat rate shipping boxes and mailers.
One of my favorite things to ship Jeans and bulky sweaters in is the PRIORITY flat rate envelope (the current rate to ship this mailer is $4.75) I don’t even know how much it costs to ship a pair of jeans via PRIORITY mail now days, but the last time I checked, I couldn’t ship them out for under $7.99. I found out that by folding the jeans up and putting them in a poly mailer, pushing out the excess air and then putting the poly mailer in a flat rate PRIORITY envelope, I can ship them out for about half of what it would normally cost me. I’ve never had a pair of jeans not fit in the mailer.
I’ve also used the same method for jean skirts, and heavier sweaters (cashmere can usually ship out via 1st class for less than $4.75, so I ship them in poly mailers.)
4) Utilize USPS.com carrier pickup.
By having your mail carrier pick up your outgoing packages from home, it saves you both time (driving to the post office, standing in line) and money (gas, mileage) my motto is “work smarter, not harder” don’t make selling online any more difficult than it needs to be.
5) Know what “class” to send your packages.
Mailing a 10 ounce item via PRIORITY mail is going to cost you a lot more than sending it 1st class. Items being shipped within the USA that weigh 13.0 ounces or less can ship out 1st class.
13.1 ounces or higher, usually PRIORITY will be the least expensive option. (Also, when you ship via PRIORITY mail, be familiar with the rates for the flat rate boxes and mailers, sometimes it’s less expensive to use a USPS flat rate box or mailer than it is to use your own box or polymailer and ship the item PRIORITY mail.)
Books, CD’s, DVD’s etc that are under 5 ounces are usually less expensive to ship when you use 1st class shipping.
Depending on where you live and where your item is being shipped to it will vary, but I typically find that media mail items over 6 ounces are less expensive to ship via Media Mail than they are to ship 1st Class.