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Company Spotlight: ShipStation

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What do you do?

ShipStation provides logistics software for merchants. We eliminate shipping fulfilment complexities and the taxing part of the journey from order to delivery for ecommerce retailers.
We focus on the merchant’s experience to build a world-class fulfilment solution and fulfilment workflows so that they can create the market-leading post-purchase experience now demanded by consumers.


Our shipping solution connects with leading platforms including Amazon, eBay, Etsy, Shopify and PayPal to make it easy to manage real-time online orders. We also connect with all relevant couriers, for example Royal Mail, Hermes, DPD and Parcelforce. That allows merchants to dispatch all their orders, manage returns, select courier services and create shipping labels – all through a single centralised platform. They can use their courier accounts and negotiated prices - or get our discounted rates with no courier requirements or paperwork.

 

What is your USP?

The quality of the product experience itself is what sets us apart. Our features are more tuned to the real needs of the merchant than our competition. Nobody does what we do at the level we do it. We don’t consider other companies in this space to be peers – to us, our competition is lack of customer awareness of our solutions in certain markets rather than the companies that are currently serving those markets. Most companies are stuck in manual workflows and overpriced solutions.


Our partner, Amazon, is successful because it provides such a consistently high-quality delivery experience on behalf of their customers. Our software is designed to enable merchants of all sizes to deliver a similar experience.

 

How do you deliver on this USP?

With our software in place, merchants can seamlessly connect to service providers and retailers to leverage shipping automation tools and workflows that meet retailers’ business priorities. Retailers can easily manage orders, view insights about their business and even create and print labels back at the office via our mobile app, ShipStation Mobile.


Every single task and shipping decision can be processed automatically based on retailers’ business preferences, thus making retailers’ orders right the first time and reducing the risk of human error. We equip merchants with the best possible access at the best possible price-our plans range from £7-£125 for unlimited order volume.

 

Who are your customers?

We work with ecommerce merchants who aim to expand their businesses. We take pride in immersing ourselves in retailers’ expansion plans by allowing them to connect to a pool of international carriers that fit their growth-centric strategies without charging them more.

 

What is your company’s vision?

We want to become a leading order fulfilment company to empower worldwide merchants to make their deliveries exceptionally efficient, regardless of channel, courier shipment method or deadline. Our motto is to make web-based shipping easy.


As ecommerce becomes more prevalent and more complex the number one change is in the expectation of an online shopper. Consumers now expect instant delivery within days if not the same day as when the order was placed. Our infrastructure is designed to enable small and medium-sized merchants to meet this demand.


The reality is most merchants’ differentiating potential is on the front end of the sale. The negative difference happens at the back end. We turn it into an opportunity to impress rather than disappoint.

 

How are you addressing the order fulfilment challenges retailers face today?

ShipStation’s branded returns portal addresses three primary returns challenges by reducing workload, decreasing returns and increasing revenue as outlined in our case study. It provides retailers with an automated returns process with branded, easy-to-use returns experience for their customers and eliminates future returns by identifying and analysing reasons for the returns. Retailers can save money on the IT support with our expert ShipStation team acting as an extension of our clients’ business to ensure that support is at hand.

 

How are you using emerging technology to help retailers grow?

We have integrated voice technology into our software product to accelerate retailers’ label printing processes. Our clients have found it very useful when interfacing with our mobile app. The result is that retailers are able to save the time and multitask with technology doing the job for them. We have also looked into how augmented reality can help staff in a warehouse environment.


We believe that emerging technology has to be evaluated for its ability to make merchants deliver operations more efficiently - not because it’s seen as ‘cool.’

 

What are your main goals over the next 5 years?

Our long-term objective is to have every seller using ShipStation. We want to empower retailers to provide the kind of customer service consumers will come back for by enabling them to provide quick order processing, great communication and efficient shipments and returns.

 

Give us your one sentence elevator pitch.

Wherever you sell, however you deliver – exceptionally efficient.

 

SMBs Grow Online Sales Using ShipStation’s Branded Returns Portal: Average Order Increase of 16%

Most shoppers check an e-tailer’s returns policy (*), value free return labels (**), and an easy, accessible returns process. But does it make sense for small-to-medium-sized businesses to mimic all the generous policies big retailers have?


ShipStation looked at hundreds of merchants who sell online and in third-party marketplaces. The leading ecommerce fulfillment platform investigated how the adoption of a self-service returns feature for consumers affected the success of these retailers.

 

The test design:

Merchants ranged from low volume (under 50 orders per month) to mid-size businesses (6,000+ orders/month). The comparison looked at overall sales volume before stores launched ShipStation’s Branded Returns Portal feature vs. the months after.


In addition, ShipStation researched how likely shoppers were to buy again from a store that offered a returns experience which involved the Branded Returns Portal.

 

The results:

  • The average store saw 16% more orders after feature adoption. In many cases, not only the order volume but average order value also increased.
  • It was 28.8% more likely that a shopper who returned an item through the Branded Returns Portal would come back to the same store than consumers who returned items through another method.

Bottom line:

The results clearly showed that online SMB merchants should adopt best practices on returns, including providing an easy process and a clear, prominently marketed policy to build trust.


Sellers showing more confidence in their products and professionalism in handling returns will “in return” encourage more shoppers to have the confidence to open their wallet.

 

The full data and more stats on this is available here: www.shipstation.com/blog/inking-new-ideas/boost-sales-with-branded-returnsportal

SHIPSTATION IN BRIEF

Global reach: US, UK, CA, AU
Established: 2011
Target group: Online sellers (multi-channel, multi-courier, subscriptions, 3PL)
Employees globally: > 200

 

Footnotes/sources:

* www.ups.com/us/en/services/knowledge-center/article.page?name=return-shoppers-by-rethinking-your-online-returns


** www.statista.com/statistics/489858/importance-of-delivery-and-return-servicesin-online-retail-in-the-uk/

 

 

This Company Spotlight was produced by InternetRetailing and sponsored by ShipStation. Funding articles in this way allows us to explore topics and present relevant services and information that we believe our readers will find of interest.

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