Turning an online order into a smile on a holiday morning is no easy task. With shipping delays, out-of-stock items, and mishandled packages just scratching the surface of what can go awry, things may feel out of your control after you click that “Check-Out” button. Having worked with thousands upon thousands (upon thousands) of merchants, we’re happy to provide you, the consumer, with a handful of things you can do before checking out to make sure your order gets where it’s going in time for a smile.
Order in Time
In a world with “Prime” and “Now”, procrastinating has almost been rewarded. Don’t let that lull you into a false sense of security. If you know what you’re getting someone, get it NOW. Order in November or at the beginning of December and watch your friends panic as they realize the earrings they were going to get their sister is out-of-stock and won’t get to Arizona by the 25th.
Keep an eye on your order with a tracking number. Quicker services tend to come with one by default so make sure you see one once the order ships. The trick is to only check tracking once a day, otherwise you’ll just drive yourself crazy. Unless it’s delivery day. Then all bets are off.
Know the Deadlines
We mentioned it above, but this is really where our infographic comes in handy for you. If December 19th is the last day for an order to be sent USPS First Class Mail, do NOT order a product with that service on the 19th. Always, always, always expect delays. Whoever you’re buying from is likely slammed and can’t get orders out same day (unless they guarantee it). In that case, choose a faster service that’ll give you a couple days of leeway.
Insure When it Counts
Are you buying something big and expensive, like a guitar or TV or computer? Request insurance! If something happens in transit—and things happen in transit all the time—ensure you and your gift are covered. It can cost a bit extra but if we’re all being honest, the end result may be a late gift, but late is better than broken and broke.
The real secret behind a stress-free holiday experience? Don’t procrastinate. I know, I know. It’s like asking water to not be wet. So if you do wait, this is what we recommend. This is how you can make holiday shopping just a bit easier.
And now, without further ado, here’s ShipStation’s 2015 Holiday Shipping Guide:
You can also download it here:
|1250 x 2059||1700 x 2800|
|500 x 824||850 x 1400|