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Thinking About Offering Free Shipping With Shopify? Read This First!

Mona 19 July 2021

How free shipping can make your store sales soar on Shopify!

Do you want to know one of the secret ingredients of successful Shopify stores?

Not only does free shipping increase your customer satisfaction, but it also boosts customer loyalty and creates a positive shopping experience.

The way you design your ecommerce store can have a significant impact on the success of your business.

If you're an online store with an established customer base, and if you want to increase revenues without potentially increasing your prices, this might just be what you need!  

Free shipping offers are attracting more customers than ever before - it's time for retailers to take note! 

9 out of 10 consumers say that free shipping is their number one incentive for shopping online more often. - Walker Sands Future of Retail Report

How to use free shipping to boost your sales on Shopify.

Did you know that the average conversion rate for an ecommerce store is 3.5%? With free shipping, your store can see an increase in sales of up to 12%.

We all like a good deal. When you offer your customers an additional perk, such as free shipping on your Shopify site or discounts for first-time buyers, they'll more than likely spend even more with you!

But it's not enough to just have a free shipping policy or program in place - you also need to promote it.

It can be hard to convince people to buy something new and exciting if it's not clear what the item is - especially when we are talking about online shopping from home.

That’s why some smart businesses have found that giving their clients incentives in the form of promotions actually leads them to increase their average order value (AOV).

What does this mean? You guessed it: increased revenue opportunities.

Ways to offer Shopify's Free Shipping service to your customers without damaging your profit margins

Designing your free shipping program

If you're considering free shipping for your online store, be sure to do a few things first.

Want to offer free shipping? Check your margins first!

The first step in considering free shipping is reviewing your margins on your top selling products. Do you have the profit margins to offer free shipping discounts? Don't forget to factor in payment processing and Shopify fees when taking this into consideration.

Investigate your current average order value

And set the minimum and maximum value amount for free shipping. Estimate how much it will cost your company to ship items and then make a decision about what threshold customers must spend in order to have the option of free shipping.

Remember that free shipping incentivizes shoppers to buy more! So the minimum order value for a qualifying sale should be higher than your normal purchase order value.

Offer free shipping on specific products

Target specific products with the highest margins only and see what kind of improvement you get in regards to sales.

Calculate shipping rates into product pricing

Consider increasing your product prices to help carry the burden of taking on a free shipping discount. See how your profit compares.

Test and track your conversion rates

See how many customers are swayed by offering free shipping as an incentive. Compare the numbers before and after offering a deal like this to see if it's worth it. Don't forget to track new customer acquisition as well

Generate a worst case scenario test

Take your largest, smallest, lightest and heaviest products and price out different shipping scenarios to see what the shipping costs would be. Are you losing money on these transactions? If so, how much?

Consider a free shipping rate for all orders

Free shipping is a great way to increase your conversion rates. Consider offering it on all orders, especially if you have high order values that are well above any minimum threshold for free shipping you may set. Plus, this may help convince people who do not meet the minimum purchase value to buy from your website anyway.

Shop around for better shipping rates.

In order to set up free shipping successfully, you need to make sure that you are getting the best shipping rates possible.

Did you know that CourierGateway is a verified Shopify Store app? You could save up to 70% of your first shipping order - let us show you how. Schedule a FREE demo today.

Figure out what cities, states, or countries you should offer free shipping too. 

Identify which shipping zone or zones carry the most risk and decide whether to include them in your marketing promotion or not.

Know your numbers

Look at your last few months or your last year of sales to help make your final decision. Would you have lost money? What would an estimated 12% increase in sales look like for your business?

How to promote your shipping program

Create free shipping discount codes

Shopify has a customizable Shopify code generator that provides you with discount codes that can be used on Shopify stores for marketing purposes.

These promotional Shopify codes work just like coupon codes and give customers money off of their total purchases when they enter the discount code at checkout. An example of a free shipping code could be SHIPFREE.

Considerations for creating discount codes

There are several things to keep in mind while creating discount codes. Just like you'd meticulously plan a party or vacation, do the same with your promotional discount codes.

- Consider what products, variants and collections you want your discount code to apply to

- Consider limiting the number of times your discount code can be used.

Pro Shopify tip: If you set up a discount with a start and end time, the expiration date is based on your selected time zone in your Shopify admin console.

For the complete guide in creating discount codes click here.

Create a Free Shipping Bar For Your Shopify Store

Also known as an announcement bar, creating a free shipping bar is one of the best ways to promote your free shipping program.

To get the best results and the highest conversion rates on your announcement bar remember to:

  • Keep things short and get to the point fast! You have less than 8 seconds to make an impression. Don't waste those precious moments on hard to read banners.

  • Customize the design. Don't be afraid to make your announcement bar stand out!

  • Make it actionable by adding a call to action or click here statement.

Here are some commonly used free shipping announcements:

  • "Unlock FREE shipping today. Click here for more details!"

  • "FREE shipping on orders of $50 or more. Click here for the discount code!"

  • "Save on shipping rates instantly! Add discount code SHIPFREE to your cart at checkout"

  • "FREE Shipping all weekend long! Enter discount code SHIPFREE."

If you haven't already added the Shopify free shipping bar to your store, check out 15 of the best free apps here.

Promote your free shipping promotion.

This may seem a little redundant but setting and forgetting about your free shipping rate is a big no-no.

Promote your Shopify free shipping service with a compelling call-to-action that includes all the necessary details. Be specific!

Include an explanation of why this shipping rate promotion exists, how long it's valid for, create urgency by mentioning the end date and what page customers can visit to find out more about it. 

Also consider running ads or target specific social media posts to help support your free shipping rate campaign.

Optimize ads with keywords and don't forget to include hashtags and product tags across your posts.

For more tips on promoting your shipping discount with pay per click (PPC) ads visit WordStream here.

How to set up free shipping for your Shopify store

Use Shopify's Free Shipping Calculator to Create a "Best Offer" Deal on Your Storefront

Using the Shopify free shipping calculator you can offer different levels of free shipping based on order size.

For example, if an order is over $100.00 you may want to offer ground shipping for free or maybe USPS Priority mail or Canada Post untracked. You can even exclude certain items from being eligible for this deal!

Shopify does all the math for you and automatically calculates the proper amount they should pay in taxes due to location and type of shipping option selected.

Create calculated shipping rates

Shipping rates calculated at checkout by the carrier are provided by a third-party shipping partner based on order details.

This allows you to calculate the exact shipping rate you will be charged for each purchase. 

It's also necessary to enter accurate weights to each of your products in order to provide accurate shipping charges at checkout.

For detailed information about how to add shipping rates visit Shopify shipping settings.

Ready to start your free shipping promotion? Shipping with Shopify can be easy with CourierGateway by your side.

CourierGateway is the most simple, easy-to-use Shopify Shipping App on the market today.

Connect your store with our powerful shipping automation tools and save time while saving money!  Automatically sync orders, track information and offer multi couriers for a variety of delivery options based on what best suits your needs.

With one central dashboard, you'll have power over all aspects of delivery from start  ?til end so that you never have to worry about the shipping process again.

Get started with CourierGateway and start saving today.

Happy selling!