Bankers Advertising Articles

Shipping Costs How Much?

January 23, 2014

**This article was published in our weekly newsletter.

I am halfway through my 14th year at Bankers Advertising. For most of that time I have been handling the issues that may arise with an order after it has been shipped. A common call I receive is for billed freight charges. When you’re selling an order it can be fairly easy to overlook the freight costs that will be added to the total. If the product that is being purchased is heavy or ships in large boxes – that cost can add up quickly. If rush shipping is needed, those costs can skyrocket and the freight can be almost as much as (or even more than) the product cost. If the client is not aware of those charges they can be shocked when they receive their invoice.
If you know that the product is going to be heavy or shipped in large boxes, I always recommend getting a freight quote. The same goes for any upgrade to the shipping method. There can be a huge difference between ground shipping and overnight. Even 2nd day Air can be expensive. There are many shipping options available and knowing exactly when your client needs their order can save a lot of money. Even with overnight shipping via UPS you can choose between Early AM – before 8:00, Regular – before 10:30 in most locations and Saver which gets it there before the end of the day. The later in the day it can be delivered, the less it costs. If you know there will be several large boxes or the product will be heavy, using a trucking company can often save money as well. Determining how a product
should be shipped or what might cost more can be difficult. I found some very useful information in an article by Jenna Markowki called, “Why Does My Shipping Cost So Much?” She does an excellent job of breaking down the pieces and explaining how the shipper determines the cost per box.
Weight: This factor is pretty straightforward. Your order will cost more or less depending on how much it weighs when placed on a scale. The more it weighs, the more expensive your shipping will be.
Dimensional Weight: Weight is all well and good, but not all of our items are very heavy. For example, items like Koozies, lunch coolers, and tote bags are actually pretty light. However, they are typically shipped in large boxes. This is where dimensional weight comes into play. Even though your items may not weigh a lot, a large box still takes up a lot of room on the truck (or train, or plane). Dimensional weight is the cubic size of your package. This is calculated by multiplying the height by the length by the width, or height x length x width. You can measure in either inches or centimeters.

According to UPS, to determine the dimensional weight for domestic shipments, you divide the cubic size of your package (height x length x width) by 166 to get the dimensional weight in pounds. For international shipments you divide the cubic size of your shipment by 139 to get the dimensional weight in pounds. Or, if you measured in centimeters, you divide by 5,000 to get the dimensional weight in kilograms.

So which one will you be charged for: actual weight or dimensional weight?
Well, it depends on which one is bigger! Whichever of the two weights is the largest is your billable weight, and will be the weight that is used to calculate your shipping cost.
You can think of it like this: Let’s say you have a box of USB drives that weighs 20 pounds in a 6” x 8” x 10” box, so a dimensional weight of 3.5 pounds. You also have a box of custom stress balls that weighs 20 pounds in a 24” x 14” x 15” box, so a dimensional weight of 36.3 pounds. Even though both boxes weigh the same amount, since the stress balls come in a larger box, and therefore have a larger dimensional weight, they will cost more to ship simply because that box takes up more room on the truck.
Transit Distance: Another important factor in calculating your shipping is how far your promo items have to travel. The more distance between the factory your items are shipping from and your delivery location, the more expensive your shipping will be.

A few other items that can affect the cost are damage resistant packaging, flammable or perishable items, international shipping, drop shipments and  whether you are shipping to a business or residence. It sure is a lot to keep in mind. If you are ever in doubt you can call your sales manager and ask for a freight quote. We’re always happy to help!
-Keisha Tompkin

Uncategorized — Marie Young @ 3:00 pm