Online shopping through eBay, and other similar sites, has increased dramatically over the past decade. Shoppers and retailers all around the world have learned to take advantage of the convenience and affordability of this new method of doing business. If you’re a regular eBay user, it is important to find a reliable and affordable method of transporting your packages. This means locating a service that will deliver your packages on time, in good condition, and at a reasonable price. Here are some of choices available to eBay users when it comes to delivering parcels.
Using Royal Mail Postal Services
Royal Mail offers standard shipping services for parcels that are within certain cash value limits. Beyond that, they require you to use a more secure level of shipping service. Special service deliveries are handled with increased care, and better security features. When you use Royal Mail’s shipping services, you are informed when your package arrives, but cannot monitor the progress of the shipment en route.
When it comes to customer service, Royal Mail is not traditionally known for its high standards. It can take quite a while for them to investigate claims of lost or damaged parcels: up to three months for international parcel deliveries. Compensation is handed out according to the cost price of the item based on the company’s assessment of the current market value, not on the original retail value.
Using a Courier Service
Couriers come in all shapes and sizes, affording a wide selection of parcel delivery options. This is useful when you require eBay shipping for a variety of different items, and comparison shopping between the different courier services on offer can result in finding the best deals. Couriers offer both economy and express shipping, as well as specialty services for high-value or oversized items. Also, the majority of courier companies will provide parcel tracking with their orders. This means that you can monitor the progress of your delivery throughout the entire process.
Royal Mail announced that it will be charging VAT on many postal services staring in February 2011. This is worrying to a number of small and medium-sized businesses that depend on the service, and could become unaffordable if the new VAT expenses cannot be reclaimed. In some cases, Royal Mail customers will find their delivery costs increased by 20 percent over the short-term. In addition to the new VAT charges, Royal Mail also plans price increases starting in April 2011, causing a second blow to businesses.
With all of these changes coming into effect over the next few months, small businesses are likely to take a significant hit to their bottom line. Those that rely heavily on parcel delivery services will be hit the hardest. These new proposals have many business managers looking for new parcel delivery service providers. Even before these price increases, a private courier service could often offer delivery options at a lower cost. After the proposed increases, Royal Mail delivery services are going to be significantly more expensive in many cases.