So you’ve ordered your custom shipping boxes, figured out what items to promote for the holidays, and are already busy fulfilling orders for your online customers. Now it’s time to get ready for the final holiday shipping rush, which can be the busiest time of the year for online retailers. The end of the year is nearing and you’ve already survived every holiday from Valentine’s Day through Thanksgiving. The final push of the year is the Christmas, Chanukah, and New Year’s rush. The following how-to-guide will help retailers prepare to ship products throughout December and into January in order to stay on top of things even as orders get out of control and lines at the post office stretch around blocks.
The Importance of Planning Ahead
It may be too late to do any more major pre-planning, but it’s not too late to maneuver your final shipping schedule to be as efficient as possible and, of course, think ahead for next year. It’s ideal to start planning for a holiday rush months in advance, and some experts even suggest starting your holiday preparations as early as August. But even in the weeks leading up to Christmas, you can consider some timesaving and stress-reducing tips just by staying one step ahead of the game.
Important Holiday Shipping Dates
Everyone knows that the day after Thanksgiving is Black Friday, and now retailers also consider the Saturday after Thanksgiving to be Small Business Saturday and the first day of the following week to be Cyber Monday. But here are some other important dates to remember:
Free Shipping Day – This special day of free shipping happens annually in mid-December, when retail customers are offered free shipping through retail participants. This year’s Free Shipping Day is December 18. Online retailers must sign up in advance to be part of this day.
Super Saturday – The last Saturday before Christmas is one of the busiest online shopping days of the year, when many last-minute shoppers finish their final purchases in preparation for the December 25 holiday. This year, Super Saturday is December 20. Many retailers offer one-day sales to take advantage of this big shopping day when so many shoppers are either on their computers, perusing, or making final in-store decisions.
Green Monday – The last Monday prior to Christmas is considered Green Monday, which is often the standard cut-off date for many shipping outlets to ensure your packages reach recipients by Christmas Day. Make sure to be ready for one final push of shipping on this day, and if you’re sending out packages to customers, you’ll want to be sure to do everything in your power to get final shipments out by the end of this Monday, which is December 22 this year.
There are plenty of busy days for retailers throughout November and December, and even into January as shoppers make returns and exchanges following the gift-giving rush. So make sure you have enough custom shipping boxes, prepare for these busy days ahead, and take notes so you’ll be even more prepared for next year.