If you’re a small business owner in Boston – if you’re part of a start-up, or you’re growing the family business, or you’re the whole show – one piece of advice you hear constantly is to work smarter, not harder.
Well, what does that actually mean?
It means considering every decision, to be sure you’re making the best use of your time, energy, and resources. Maximizing profitability means controlling costs.
For example, let’s look at what the typical small business goes through when it comes time to ship products – whether that’s directly to consumers, or on a wholesale basis to retailers or distribution centers.
Comparing Costs: Shipping In House vs Working with a Packing & Shipping Company
For companies that have relatively small sales volume, it might seem like it makes more sense to handle all of the company’s packing and shipping internally. What’s involved in doing that?
Well, first you have to make sure you have the proper shipping materials on hand. This might mean using cardboard shipping boxes and standard packing materials – but if your products are going to need special protection during transport, you’ re going to have to source shipping materials customized to your specific needed. A packing and shipping company has the expertise to help you, but if you want to use trial and error to figure out what type of packaging materials will protect your products in the most cost-effective manner, you certainly have that option.
Sourcing the shipping materials is only the beginning. You’re going to need space to store and use them. Additionally, you’re going to need personnel to pack, label, and ship your packages. If you’re planning on using existing staff to do this, be aware that the time they’re spent being your shipping department is time they can’t spend doing the job you originally hired them to do.
You have to pay the costs associated with your in-house shipping department whether you’re using it or not. If there’s a week where you don’t ship anything, you’re still paying for the space to store and use your shipping supplies; you’re still paying your employee’s wages.
Compare this to working with a pack and ship company in Massachusetts. You pay only for the supplies and materials you need. You don’t have to store anything. You can keep your employees focused on their jobs. Depending on your company’s needs, this can be a really smart way to save money.