Charging for Postage

I just wanted to share this, with the hope that it will help others. When I first started Kimbo's Cookies, I wanted to provide shipping at the lowest possible cost to my customers. The problem was that, on Etsy, I had to list a shipping price, so I would estimate the weight of an order and low-ball the cost. I lost over $650 in shipping fees that first year. I now ship everything flat rate. I have boxes from BRP that fit one dozen and two dozen nicely. A medium flat rate box will hold one dozen (with lots of room for bubble wrap) and a large flat rate box holds the larger order.

 

I was so scared of losing business because of high shipping costs, that I burned myself. So my tip is, use flat rate boxes. It makes invoicing and/or Etsy listing a breeze.

Original Post

You definitely don't want to lose money on shipping. I also make sure I am charging for my packaging materials and for the time it takes me to package an order.

 

I frequently use the priority regional rate boxes. They can be considerably cheaper than the flat rate (I often ship for 6-9 dollars for 1-2 dozen cookies). I charge $13 dollars for shipping for one dozen and an additional 3 dollars for each additional dozen, which covers the cost of a flat rate box and materials. If I am able to ship in a regional rate box, I get to keep the additional money. That way I can charge a single rate to my customers, regardless of where they are, but still ship in the cheapest way possible for me and guarantee I never lose money on shipping. 

Originally Posted by CaraBellaCreationsbyShauna:

Good Information, would you mind sharing those dimensions for the BRP boxes? What would be a good suggestions for orders larger than 2 dozen? Interested in your thoughts.

The larger ones are 10 x 7 x 4, white with a window. (I know this because they are sitting right next to me. ) The smaller ones ( I went and measured one just for you!) are 8 x 8x 2, with no window, although when I order again I'll get windows on both sizes. I use self-sealing bags for each cookie, line the bottom of the boxes with shred and put a layer of bubble wrap on top before closing the BRP box. Then I wrap that box with enough bubble wrap to fit snugly in the USPS box. I've never had a broken cookie.

 

For larger orders, I use separate USPS boxes. I'm leery of shipping too many cookies in one box.

 

*edited to add: I've shipped all over the world: Switzerland, Sweden, Great Brittan, Australia, Afghanistan, etc.

Like HappyLorisBaking, I use USPS Regional Boxes instead of flat rate boxes. 99% of the time, the Regional Box rate is cheaper. Only 2 negatives to the regional boxes. First is that you can't get them at the post office - you have to order them online. Which is no big deal - they are still free and they ship them right to your house - but you have to make sure you order more before you run out of them. Secondly, if you print up your labels at home - PayPal does not give you the option of shipping with a regional rate box. You have to go to usps.com to print your label (or Etsy). Again, not a big deal, it's just a convenience thing....

 

I've also found that with heavier boxes - UPS is cheaper than USPS. Fed Ex is always the most expensive for me.

Originally Posted by JoMama:

Shipping is the one area I have struggled with most. Two questions -- 1. what do you mean by self sealing bag? 2. Where do I find 'regional boxes' on USPS and how many days transit for those?

 

Thank you for sharing your methods!

Here's where I get my self-sealing bags. There's a little strip at the top edge that you peel away with adhesive underneath it. Slip the cookie in the bag, fold it over and it's sealed.

Originally Posted by Kimbo's Cookies:
Originally Posted by CaraBellaCreationsbyShauna:

Good Information, would you mind sharing those dimensions for the BRP boxes? What would be a good suggestions for orders larger than 2 dozen? Interested in your thoughts.

The larger ones are 10 x 7 x 4, white with a window. (I know this because they are sitting right next to me. ) The smaller ones ( I went and measured one just for you!) are 8 x 8x 2, with no window, although when I order again I'll get windows on both sizes. I use self-sealing bags for each cookie, line the bottom of the boxes with shred and put a layer of bubble wrap on top before closing the BRP box. Then I wrap that box with enough bubble wrap to fit snugly in the USPS box. I've never had a broken cookie.

 

For larger orders, I use separate USPS boxes. I'm leery of shipping too many cookies in one box.

 

*edited to add: I've shipped all over the world: Switzerland, Sweden, Great Brittan, Australia, Afghanistan, etc.

Kimbo's Cookies - Do you have a commercial kitchen? I was wondering since you are able to ship all over the world.

Originally Posted by Kimbo's Cookies:
Originally Posted by CaraBellaCreationsbyShauna:

Good Information, would you mind sharing those dimensions for the BRP boxes? What would be a good suggestions for orders larger than 2 dozen? Interested in your thoughts.

The larger ones are 10 x 7 x 4, white with a window. (I know this because they are sitting right next to me. ) The smaller ones ( I went and measured one just for you!) are 8 x 8x 2, with no window, although when I order again I'll get windows on both sizes. I use self-sealing bags for each cookie, line the bottom of the boxes with shred and put a layer of bubble wrap on top before closing the BRP box. Then I wrap that box with enough bubble wrap to fit snugly in the USPS box. I've never had a broken cookie.

 

For larger orders, I use separate USPS boxes. I'm leery of shipping too many cookies in one box.

 

*edited to add: I've shipped all over the world: Switzerland, Sweden, Great Brittan, Australia, Afghanistan, etc.

Thank you again for providing this information.

 

I just saw this, so I apologize for not responding sooner. I don't have a commercial kitchen. In Idaho, cookies are considered a, "low risk item," so I'm able to do everything in my home. I get asked about this A LOT. I only found out about it when I was in a food safety course offered through the Dept. of Health. I'd signed up for it as a requirement to rent space in a commercial kitchen. Believe me, I was shocked when I found out, and spent at least 20 minutes of the class drilling the instructor to make sure of the viability of cookies being a "low risk item." Originally Posted by Stir Bake Decorate:
Originally Posted by Kimbo's Cookies:
Originally Posted by CaraBellaCreationsbyShauna:

Good Information, would you mind sharing those dimensions for the BRP boxes? What would be a good suggestions for orders larger than 2 dozen? Interested in your thoughts.

The larger ones are 10 x 7 x 4, white with a window. (I know this because they are sitting right next to me. ) The smaller ones ( I went and measured one just for you!) are 8 x 8x 2, with no window, although when I order again I'll get windows on both sizes. I use self-sealing bags for each cookie, line the bottom of the boxes with shred and put a layer of bubble wrap on top before closing the BRP box. Then I wrap that box with enough bubble wrap to fit snugly in the USPS box. I've never had a broken cookie.

 

For larger orders, I use separate USPS boxes. I'm leery of shipping too many cookies in one box.

 

*edited to add: I've shipped all over the world: Switzerland, Sweden, Great Brittan, Australia, Afghanistan, etc.

Kimbo's Cookies - Do you have a commercial kitchen? I was wondering since you are able to ship all over the world.

 

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