In today’s competitive business environment, it is critical that the products you ship to customers arrive in excellent condition. Fail to meet a person’s expectations, and not only will they be disappointed and expect a replacement, they are likely to share criticism on social media and then find another provider. So, not only do you lose their business, it is likely that prospective customers in their social circle will be reluctant to shop with you as well.
One of the many shipping challenges e-commerce businesses face are the weather conditions packages are exposed to while in transit. Precipitation can wreak havoc on a package and its contents. You can’t stop the rain, but there are ways to minimize the risk of water damage to the items you ship.
“One of the major shipping challenges e-commerce businesses face is the environmental conditions packages are exposed to while in transit.” TWEET THIS
Strategies for Ensuring Your Products Arrive Dry and Undamaged
It is safe to say that there are no cost-effective, fully waterproof packaging options. However, there are strategies for making standard packaging more water-resistant and providing greater protection for your products. If the time of year, shipping destination, or both give you reason to believe your package may be delivered on a rainy day, try one or more of the following:
- Ship in corrugated cartons. Compared to cardboard, the three-layer construction of corrugated packaging not only provides a greater degree of water resistance, it is also stronger and less likely to tear while in transit.
- Use reinforced water-activated tape (WAT). Also known as paper tape, gummed tape, or Kraft paper tape, WAT creates a stronger seal that holds tight even in the worst weather conditions.
- Pack items in new shipping cartons. While a previously used shipping carton may look like it has maintained its structural integrity, it has probably been weakened by the journey and is more vulnerable to weather conditions.
- Tape interior and exterior seams. Run tape along the interior seams of a carton before it is packed and sealed to help keep water out. Do the same to the exterior seams to provide even greater protection.
- Use watertight interior packaging. Shipping cartons are not fully waterproof, but the packaging you use within them can be. Place items in a sealed plastic bag to keep water that makes its way into the carton from affecting the product.
- Pad the shipment with non-absorbent packing materials. Padding options like air pillows will protect the contents of a carton without retaining water that can damage an item.
- Use padding to elevate the item. A package delivered on a rainy day may, unfortunately, sit outside in pooling water until the recipient retrieves it. Add ample packaging material to the bottom of the shipping carton to keep the product out of the reach of water that may work its way into the box.
Other Shipping Considerations
In addition to the actions you take to make a shipping carton more water resistant and its contents better protected from moisture, there are other considerations to keep in mind. For example, some shippers may have a better reputation for how they handle packages, especially in bad weather. The one that regularly takes the extra step to place a package in a sheltered area at the destination should get your business.
Also, you might consider alerting customers as they make their purchase that packages are delivered in all weather conditions. This reminder may prompt them to choose a delivery destination where the package will be protected or received in person.
Don’t Let Mother Nature Rain on Your (Product) Parade!
Your shipments don’t have to be at the mercy of the weather. With proper packaging materials, including WAT, and an extra step or two to increase a shipping carton’s water resistance, you can help ensure that products arrive undamaged and that your customers are delighted.
If you have questions about our water-activated tape, electric water-activated tape dispensers, and other products, please contact us at your convenience.