How to reduce your shipping costs

With the economy taking a hit due to COVID-19, business are finding themselves shipping more things than ever and having to tighten their belts a little bit in order to do it. Saving money isn’t just something that’s nice these days – it’s a necessity.

So to help you guys out a little bit, this week’s post is going to be all about that. Here are some ways you can save money shipping your packages. Let’s jump right in!

Re-use old boxes 

When you pay to ship something – you have the payment for shipping itself and then also the cost of the box to go with it. We recommend that you handle your boxes carefully so that you can reuse them in the future. Re-using packages will not only save you a ton of money shipping things to and fro, it’s also pretty great for the environment.

Does it really need to be a box? 

In the most brutal pun in the history of blogs, you will save a lot of money by… thinking outside the box. Sorry. We had to.

But seriously, not everything needs to go in a box. Not everything needs to go in a big box, too. There are plenty of ways to get things from here to there – from bubble padded mailers to custom envelopes. People mis-ship things all the time and spend a lot more money than they need to simply because they get lazy about the kind of packaging they use. Consider what you’re shipping before you ship it.

Don’t pay for packing materials unless you need to 

There’s no reason to buy lots of bubble wrap and the like. You have newspaper, excess wrapping paper – heck, save bubble wrap that people send to you – all at your disposal. Don’t waste needless dollars on newer packing materials unless you absolutely have to. Especially if you’re in a position where every cent counts – don’t go wasting it on packing materials.

Consider regional carriers and couriers 

There are a lot of regional companies like ours that might not have the national network of the post office or UPS, but can deliver your package quicker and safely for a lot less than the major carriers. To boot, you’ll be able to find a better price as these companies will work with you to both get and keep your business. And from a small businesses’ perspective – a little service can go a long ways towards building and keeping a long-term customer.

Ask about association discounts

Every profession and service has some sort of professional association and those associations have partnerships with various carriers, couriers and the like. If you find yourself needing to save a few bucks, this could be an outstanding resource – one that could even extend beyond helping you just save on shipping costs as these groups partner with all sorts of businesses who have services that can make yours better..

Hopefully, these tips will help it make it a little less expensive to get things from here to there. Good luck!

How to pack for international shipping

One of the many services companies like ours offer is international shipping. Whether it’s on this side of the globe or overseas, your package needs to go a long way and we’ll help you get it there.

But what do you need to do? How do you get your package ready and how can you be sure it’ll get there in one piece? Today’s blog is here to answer those questions for you. Here are the things you need to do in order to get your package ready to be shipped internationally. Let’s jump right in!

What to put the package in? 

Make sure you choose a sturdy, newer box for international mail. Your package is going a long way and longer journeys mean a higher chance something could happen to it, so make sure the package itself is built tough.

Go bigger and pack around your parcel 

Choose a box that’s a little bigger and be sure to line it with paper, packing chips or newspaper. Make sure there’s no leftover space for the item to move around while in transit. Again – this package is going a long way and you’ll want to make sure it’s packed snug in a tough box so that it gets to it’s destination in one piece.

Double packing for valuables

If what you’re shipping is valuable – such as jewelry – then you’re going to want to pack twice. That means putting the item in a box and then packing it in a second, tougher box in order to provide extra cushioning.

Pack documentation with the package

Be sure you have shipping paperwork on the outside of the package and place a spare set of customs documents on the inside of the package. If customs agents can’t find the proper documentation, they WILL open the package – and if anything happens – this just ensures that they’ll find it.

Remove any confusion

If there are old barcodes or anything that could get mistakenly scanned – make sure it’s removed. That way, there won’t be any suspicion or questions as to what needs to be scanned and looked at by customs agents.

Packing your goods is one of the most important aspects to shipping something internationally. It’ll pass through a whole swath of places – from conveyor belts to transport vehicles. But with a little extra care and though – you can ensure that your package arrives where it’s supposed to go on time – and most importantly – undamaged.

Handling packages in a pandemic

Well it’s pretty clear that things have changed quite a bit in our world since the last time we spoke. With the COVID-19 pandemic, we’re all rethinking not only what’s important, but how we go about everything we do. Social distancing, quarantine and self-isolation have all become terms that are common vernacular now and just those concepts alone have altered how we do business.

While we’re not medical experts, we are experts in what we do – and that’s delivering packages. And at a time where delivery is how we’re all getting by, we’re here to help pitch in however we can. Here are some things you can do to handle your packages in the safest possible way.

Handling packages

According to the CDC, there’s no real guidelines for handling packages. So with that in mind, we’ll just make sure that we pass along the same info – and that’s that washing your hands is the first line of defense. There seems to be a train of thought that the virus can live on certain surfaces and with cardboard – you never know what it might come across. Wash your hands when you handle your packages and if you’re on the receiving end – you might want to let your package sit for a day or two before you open it.

Wash those hands

Like we said above – wash your hands! Before and after. The CDC recommends washing for at least 20 seconds while lathering the backs of your hands, in-between fingers and even make time to try to get under your fingernails a bit. If there isn’t soap handy – use hand sanitizer.

Disinfect surfaces

Another CDC recommendation says that you should clean and disinfect surfaces that you touch frequently. So does that mean packages? Well to be honest- there isn’t a 100% answer either way – but it might not be a bad idea to use a Clorox wipe on the outside of the box. And then obviously – be sure to clean whatever surface it was on when you were handling it. Treat it just like you would treat doorknobs, light switches, counters, keyboards, toilers and the like.

Just remember as you read this – these are recommendations based on our personal opinions and CDC recommendations. Truth is that unfortunately they’re still not 100% sure how the virus spreads, although they do know things like respiratory droplets and the like can contribute. Our advice is to be diligent and erring on the side of caution won’t hurt you!

So good luck, stay inside, stay healthy and if you need delivery services, give us a call!

The benefits of outsourcing courier services

As the years roll by, businesses are getting leaner and more efficient by the day. What used to require someone full time is now sub-contracted out, giving businesses more mobility, range and financial flexibility heading forward. When it comes to courier services – it’s not any more different.

Whether it’s B2C or B2B businesses, shipping concerns come up when things start to get costly and when they get costly – we get phone calls. Here are some of the benefits your business can enjoy by outsourcing your courier services to a business like ours.

Let’s jump right in.

Reduction in transportation expenses 

When you’re managing your shipping in-house, you find yourself managing drivers and a whole fleet of trucks PLUS the logistics that needs to go into managing it all. Going with a courier service means you get out of most of those expenses – but also some of the more ‘under the hood’ expenses like gas, maintenance and repair. And of course – not focusing on logistics means that well, you can focus more on your core business.

Risk and liability

When you hire a courier service, you don’t have to use your own fleet. And when you’re not using your own fleet – you don’t have to worry about the liability for the condition of each package upon delivery. What needs to be secured can be secured and transplanting the risk can save you some money – and some peace of mind.

Speed

What makes courier services so great is their speed. And in a time where speed means a lot, you can rest assured knowing that what you need shipped will be transported as quickly and efficiently as possible. That added speed means higher customer satisfaction, an ability to spread your brand awareness more quickly. And what do those two things add up to? More customers! And of course – new customers means new revenue.

Additional services

Hey we know we’re preaching to the choir, here. Every business gets unusual requests now and then and when that curve ball is thrown, it’s nice to be able to deliver. With a courier service, you’ll be able to take on a wide range of delivery services.

And when we say ‘additional services’ we also mean things that enhance your normal deliveries. Those would be services like tracking technology, logistics management and in some special situations – even warehouse services.

If you’re interested in learning more about how a courier service can take your business to the next level, give us a call today and we’ll be happy to provide you with a free consultation. Good luck!

It’s one thing to be HIPAA certified…

HIPAA plays a significant role in a medical patient’s safety and security. Knowing it, understanding it and knowing that your company is certified – doesn’t necessarily mean that the company you’re entrusting to deliver your medical packages is HIPAA compliant.

Becoming HIPAA certified essentially means that individuals are given the information they need in order to make their business HIPAA compliant. Nothing more, nothing less. It’s a difference – and an important one to remember and one that we’ll explain here, today.

What is HIPAA?

Just about everyone in the medical industry has some sort of idea for what HIPAA is all about. Its short-hand for the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability act, which – when enacted in 1996 – mandated standards for health care information. Not only that it also helped to:

  • Provide the ability for customers to carry their health overage during time of unemployment or job transition;
  • Reduced abuse, corruption and fraud in the healthcare industry
  • Set industry standards and benchmarks for billing and other accounting processes
  • And perhaps most significant – mandated the protection and confidential handling of patient health records.

So what’s this mean if you want to hire a medical courier?

Medical couriers should always and are required to be held to the same expectations as anyone else working in a hospital or PCP’s office. Our couriers are trained and tested in nearly every area of HIPAA compliance including:

  • Patient confidentiality
  • Keeping information safe and secure
  • Understanding the key components and principles under the HIPAA regulations
  • And are also educated to what violations entail and what outcomes await them for violating the law.

Long story, short – our couriers are taught the terms of HIPAA and learn how they apply them to their own role in the healthcare industry.

Blood borne pathogens

Within the HIPAA certification curriculum exists an OSHA training on blood borne pathogens. This usually entails bodily fluids like blood – and educates the medical couriers on the risk of exposure to viruses, bacteria and other microorganisms every day. In this way and manner – our couriers are trained to be ready for the worst; knowing how to prepare in the event of a spill, break or any other unforeseen events that might befall the samples while in transport.

What it all means

While being certified is important – it’s just the first step. Even if a company has the knowledge they need, doesn’t mean they’ll take the necessary steps to enforce it. And that’s why it’s important to have a medical courier who’s not only trained, but knows what to do in the worst situations. To learn more about our medical courier services, contact us today. Good luck!

Speed is the name of the game

Courier services are used in a variety of ways and for a wide range of reasons. Whether it’s a medical emergency or simply a matter of wanting to get a big ticket item from here to there efficiently – courier services have you covered!

Also – using courier services comes with a plethora of benefits as well. Among the most popular with customers is the ability to save time – the one thing we seemingly never have enough of! Not only can you get things from one place to another more quickly, but the speed of courier services allows your company to focus on the things that matter and stay productive; not chasing packages and waiting around on whatever you need in order to do the job the right way.

Medical couriers

Most medical couriers offer 24-7 service and can guarantee that time-sensitive materials arrive on time and when they’re needed. Just as significant – you’ll be able to track your packages while they’re in transit. This means that when minutes mean the most, you’ll have the peace of mind of knowing where and when your package will be there.

Also worth knowing is that couriers are almost all CIPAA, OSHA and DOT compliant – which means you won’t have to mull over who delivers a package and how. They’ll all know what to do – even in the worst case scenario of a spill or break. When you have an emergency and seconds matter, couriers will be there.

Truck couriers

Not every delivery goes into a nice, neat and tidy package. Some things need a little muscle. Whether you’re moving pallets or need a bulk purchase brought directly to you, courier services will be able to assist. Some courier companies even specialize in fast and efficient bulk/special deliveries. Because perhaps it’s not a lot of something. Maybe it’s just one, really big thing that you don’t want exposed out in transition between one place or another. Don’t fret – couriers can handle that, too.

Speed and control

In the time and era of Amazon – it’s not just getting the product that’s important – it’s also important for the product to get to your customers –quickly and efficiently. Couriers can get your goods to your customers fast and with care. Not only that, but couriers can also put your customer in the driver’s seat – giving them free tracking of the package so they’ll know exactly when and where their packages will be arriving. People want instant gratification and with courier services, you can give that to them.

The simple fact is that today – every second counts. Speed is the name of the game. Getting your products or your important items to where they need to be quickly – that’s not only a cost savings to you – but a reputation builder as well. Customers crave dependability and if you can give them that and get to them fast? You’ll have a bright future.

To learn more about how your business can leverage our services, give us a call today and we’ll be happy to provide you with a free consultation. Until then – good luck!

What to consider when hiring a medical courier

Courier services can be used for a variety of reasons; the most important of which are usually medical ones. And if you’re a healthcare provider- whether you’re a doctor, PCP, or specialist – there’s a lot to think about when you grapple with who will be transporting your packages.

While things like pricing, packaging and tracking are all important – making this decision becomes even more intense when you consider the stakes and the risk in one item going from one place to the next.

Today, we’re going to discuss some of the things you should always be thinking about when hiring a courier service to make medical deliveries.

Timeliness

Whether it’s for a blood bank or medical equipment, these deliveries will have an impact on the lives of those who need them. Couriers operate every hour of the day and in some cases- every day of the year. They understand their customer’s needs and understand that a speedy delivery isn’t an option – but a must – especially when it’s an emergency. When you’re looking for a courier service to transport your goods – make sure they get can a job done fast in the event you need it.

Safety

There’s a lot to work through when it comes to ensuring that medical deliveries are handled correctly. Not only are their confidentiality and privacy issues at play – but there’s also the idea of materials becoming hazardous when the proper precautions aren’t taken. Make sure that the courier service you choose has drivers who are certified or have been through training in HIPAA, DOT and OSHA. Make sure they’re working with compliant equipment as well.

Experience

It says a lot about businesses when they have lots of customers. In the courier world – it’s meaningful. It means they’re dependable; it means they’re reliable; it means they do what they say they’re going to do, when they’re going to do it. Not every courier service dabbles in medical deliveries, so be sure the company you employ has significant experience in that line of delivery service.

 

Don’t take chances when it comes to medical deliveries. Taking into account the company’s experience, how they handle safety and their timeliness will help bring into a clearer focus the kind of company that will work the best for yours. Hopefully these tips will help get you closer to a decision. Good luck!

Red flags to be aware of when looking for a courier service

Simply put – dependability is everything in modern day business. That’s especially true when it comes to our line of work. If you’re out there looking to hire a courier service for your needs than you’re in luck – there are some fantastic companies out there. That being said – knowing what to avoid is sometimes just as useful as knowing what to look for when you’re going through something the first time. Avoiding those issues – or red flags – is what we’re here to discuss today.

Here are some of the major red flags to look at when you’re choosing a courier service. Let’s jump right in!

No tracking options

In today’s world, you should have unfettered access to parcel tracking. No questions asked. Companies that hide tracking options might be doing so for unscrupulous reasons, so be wary. You should know where your package is at all times – particularly if you’re in a high risk industry. If they can’t allow you to track your package, go elsewhere.

Drivers not in uniform

Seems a little old school – but simply put, if your drivers aren’t in uniform, how can you be sure you’re handing your delivery to the right person? Anyone could tell you they work for a courier, but without uniforms or ID, there’s no way for you to know for sure. And with the sensitivity and value of your goods, you want to know you’re working with a company you can trust.

No insurance

If the company doesn’t offer insurance, then they’re leaving your delivery up to chance. You – by all means – are entitled to NOT take insurance – but you should always ask if they have it as a sign that they can cover things in the event something does goes bad. This way if you use the insurance – you can get your money back.

Poor history

Always read the reviews of courier service companies. If they’re bad – then that should tell you everything you need to know. But the major thing you’ll want to look out for is lost packages. If you’re noticing that comment a lot in reviews, then this isn’t a reliable company to work with.

 

Hopefully these tips will help you determine which courier service to go with. Sure –it’s not the most positive list – but sometimes knowing what NOT to do is almost as important was what to do. Until then, good luck in your search!

Courier service vs. Standard Mail: A comparison

As a business owner – you know that you’re faced with plenty of decisions each and every day. Some of those include everything from who’s working for you to choosing the right location for a new promotion. We’re also sure that at some point – shipping will become one of those decisions.

We live in a world where customers expect their deliveries quickly and efficiently. That forces you as a business owner to think about your shipping strategy and look for new, innovative ways to deliver your service.

So you’re presented with the question: should you choose standard mail or should you consider using a courier? In the past – using couriers was seen as a luxury that only companies with significant shipping budgets could afford. Reality is – courier services are more affordable today than they’ve ever been and can have a significant impact on your business.

Here are some of the pros and cons of using both and what you can expect from each. Let’s jump right in!

Delivery speed

 On average – it takes about 1 to 4 days for packages to arrive where they’re supposed to when you use standard mail. In some cases, they could arrive the next day – but that only happens if you’re sending your mail in the same city or town. If you’re looking for same-day delivery – courier services are better equipped to handle it – and can give you a significant competitive advantage.

Cost

If you own a business that doesn’t ship mail or an abundance of items – then standard mail will most certainly be the more cost-effective choice. For those that ship frequently – the costs can add up quickly. Since there’s no competition, standard mail rates are set in stone and are what they are. There are plenty of couriers who have to compete for customers and they do this by offering competitive pricing – which can save your business a lot of money.

Personalized service 

Having delivery options is valuable tool to have at a business owner’s disposal. If you mail frequently, you may get to know the post office person and form a friendly rapport with them, but their services are what they are and that goes for everyone who walks through the door. Working with a courier opens up a door to a more personalized experience – from when you need items picked up to choosing delivery windows that keep customers happy.

Flexibility

Being able to depend on things like last minute delivery, additional pickups and the like are options that are only available to you when you hire a courier. The post office may have extra delivery options, but the delivery wait times don’t get any faster.

Courier Services offer a whole swath of extra services that can make a significant impact on your business. If you are considering using a courier service, give our team a call today and we’ll be happy to offer you a free consultation. Good luck!

Common mistakes people make when using courier services

Just like any business – we know that folks don’t like to pay more than they have to. Today, we’re going to share with you some common, costly mistakes people make when using courier services and what you can do to avoid making the same mistakes in the future. Keeping these tips in mind can make your experience with a courier a whole lot more enjoyable and can save you money.

Let’s jump right in!

Overestimating 

For folks who are new to our services, overestimating is a common mistake that’s made. If you require a package be delivered by 5, scheduling it for noon can spike your cost 30-40%. Make sure you’re choosing the service level that’s right for the job.

Poor contact information

You’d be shocked at the number of times we go to deliver packages and there aren’t crystal clear instructions. For example if we’re delivering a package to an office building – is it going to specific person directly or is it going to the front desk or mailroom? Is there a direct name and phone number so we can track down the recipient quickly?

Sometimes you can waste a lot of time and money by having us look for a needle in the proverbial corporate haystack. Be specific about your instructions. Especially when packages need to get somewhere quickly, it’s important we don’t waste time with details – so be clear and specific.

Share your secrets

In addition to sharing WHO the package is going to – you’ll also need to be specific with regards to HOW the package needs to be delivered. Do we need to go to the back of the building, through a side door or have a particular person sign? If there’s a trick to get the job done, then please share! It’ll help save you time, a lot of anxiety and some money, too!

Know when things are open and closed 

This applies less to rush deliveries and more towards people who are more or less – casually using our services. If we arrive at an address or place of business and it’s closed or not accepting packages – then we have to reroute our couriers or have them head back for re-delivery at some point. This can cause extra costs that could have been easily avoided by alerting us to any scheduled company closings.

Paying attention to these details can save you a lot of time and money – and will also help ensure a smooth, seamless delivery experience. To find out more about how courier services can benefit you, give us a call today!