Making gift baskets can be delightful, but if you don’t know how to ship gift baskets, your beautiful design won’t look gorgeous when it arrives. Here’s how to fix that.
Time is money
It was Tuesday at 3:45 pm when I received a gift basket order to be shipped from New York City to Chicago. The call notification came through my beeper (remember those?) while I worked at full-time employment. I left the building and dashed into a quiet area that happened to also include a pay telephone (remember those?).
Within seven minutes I had all of the information from the customer.
- Gift basket occasion
- Design specifics
- Recipient’s name and address
- Customer’s credit card number
Did the customer want the gift mailed that day? “Yes, please,” she said, and I agreed.
All I needed now was to exit work at 4:30, rush home to my studio, make the gift basket from scratch, box it for shipping, and deliver it to the UPS counter all before 5:00.
Drive time home was 10 minutes, leaving me 20 minutes to mail the gift. How could I possibly do all of that in a short time?
The answer is I don’t know, but it was done. My arrival time at UPS, including a five-minute drive, was 4:55 pm, five minutes before closing. Two days later, the gift arrived at the recipient’s door, and both she and the customer were pleased. So was I.
Set it up the right way
I may not recall how I could do all of that work so quickly, but one thing I do know: my studio was set up for efficiency, and that includes the shipping section.
My focus during the outside-employment days before I started making gift baskets full time was to structure my studio as if I only worked for me. Everything didn’t begin that way. However, if I was going to be a successful entrepreneur, my studio had to look the part from the beginning.
Creating sections in my studio for designing, photographing, and shipping were high on my list. If it wasn’t, that gift would never have been mailed on time.
Handy items for efficient shipping
If you believe you’ll be mailing gift baskets, your studio must have all of the items necessary for proper shipping. Here are the essentials.
Shipping needs (items for the actual shipment)
- Bubble wrap
- Unprinted packing paper
- 2-3″ wide shipping tape
- Transparent tape
- A variety of shipping boxes
- Marketing materials
General shipping section needs (items to keep in your shipping area)
- Tape measure
How to ship gift baskets
The 49-minute video on shipping gift baskets shows you, in exact detail, how to box your gift basket so it arrives in the same manner it was made. Here’s a shortened version on perfect shipping.
- Secure the gift basket design within bubble wrap.
- Assemble the box that will host the gift basket.
- Place flat, unprinted paper at the bottom of the box.
- Insert the bubble-wrapped design into the box.
- Insert crushed, unprinted paper into the box’s corners.
- Include the gift basket receipt and marketing materials.
- Close the box lid and secure it with shipping tape.
- Place the address on the front or top of the box.
Some of the more-popular questions about shipping answered in the video are:
- How do you keep the bow from crushing?
- How many boxes do I buy, and which sizes?
- Why do I need unprinted paper in the corners?
You can expect certain unpleasant outcomes if you don’t ship gift baskets correctly.
- The customer and recipient will be disappointed
- You will have to decide how to fix problems
- Certain situations require paperwork for insurance claims
- Negative online reviews may hamper additional sales
Shipping is a triumph, not a challenge
A good way to think about how to ship gift baskets is recognizing that you have a sale from a customer who trusts your ability to get the gift from point A to point B. That’s great news.
As with making gift baskets, it’s important to experiment with shipping before you receive a sale for delivery outside of your local area. You don’t want to figure out packing procedures on the fly. That creates a stressful situation, and gift baskets don’t fit into that category.
Purchase and organize your supplies. Practice shipping. Get it right to lessen time and stress. This process will keep you happily shipping gift baskets within your country or throughout the world.