Page 1 of 1

mailing/shipping...It would be interesting if...

PostPosted: Tue May 15, 2018 7:22 pm
by bloke
<rant>

It would be interesting if all shipping and mailing were required to be initiated by the RECIPIENTS.

Then, when stuff didn't get there - and folks messaged former owners of items about not having received them, the former owners could simply respond, "...and...??" :D

...the point being that I believe I push pretty hard to offer excellent products and merchandise, and that the "getting it there" part - by "professionals", no less - seems to me to be the no-brainer part of the deal...yes/no...??

Locally, I actually have a relative (labeled "cognitively disabled") who has no problem getting stuff to places for me (you know: places to where they've never before been...20, 30, 40, 50...70 miles away), and picking stuff up from similar places.

It just seems as though when a package has a name/address/phone number/email address on it...and the firm that was contracted to deliver it has stuff like employees, vehicles, and such, that packages (you know...) would get where they are supposed to go, and without fail.

</rant>

Re: mailing/shipping...It would be interesting if...

PostPosted: Wed May 16, 2018 7:53 am
by Tubaryan12
I've always looked at shipping as the cost of doing business. Most transactions go perfectly. A few do not. That's why I generally don't use the lowest cost shipping and charge what I have to in order to satisfy me financially. So far, I'm still at 100%. The only issue I've had was a package lost on its way to Korea. This issue was caused by me (I used the wrong shipping method). Once my package was recovered and re-shipped, it arrived quickly and in perfect condition.

In the end, I'll only ship what I can afford to lose. With that said, I'd need to have a lot more coin in the bank (or mattress or mason jars in th back yard) to be in your business. ....I'd be a nervous wreck waiting for things I shipped to be delivered safely.

In the end, when I sell something (just like in the store), the seller's is responsible for the item not just until the money is exchanged, but all the way until the item is handed to the customer safely.

Re: mailing/shipping...It would be interesting if...

PostPosted: Wed May 16, 2018 8:19 am
by bloke
I run into the most failures with the most expensive shipping choices made by customers.
- the most damage with "ground" services vs. bus services
- the most failures/return-to-senders/loses with express services vs. economy services

Re: mailing/shipping...It would be interesting if...

PostPosted: Wed May 16, 2018 9:57 am
by Tubaryan12
I see. I generally use the middle of the road option (priority mail). I rarely ship large items, so I know I've been lucky. I can't take the risk on a large, expensive item. For me, that has to be face to face.

Re: mailing/shipping...It would be interesting if...

PostPosted: Wed May 16, 2018 10:04 am
by bloke
Most recently, a poor soul overseas was really eager to receive some of my products very quickly, and paid a premium (absurdly high, imo) cost for really quick service.

The package never arrived. After two months, it arrived back here, with someone at FedEx (as the USPS subcontracted the shipment through FedEx) had rejected it, because they didn't approve of the USPS-supplied (and approved - thus I made it to the "pay" page, and paid) customs form which had been filled out...

...so
- They have nothing, other than expense.
- I have to waste time (who knows how much...??) attempting to recover their mailing cost, as the super-duper-express item failed to mail.

The customer is being really nice about it, but I'm beet-red, just fwiw.

Re: mailing/shipping...It would be interesting if...

PostPosted: Wed May 16, 2018 10:36 pm
by Tubaryan12
When my package was returned, USPS refunded my original shipping cost even though the same thing happened to me as to you (their system let me ship the wrong way). I got lucky on that one.

Re: mailing/shipping...It would be interesting if...

PostPosted: Wed May 16, 2018 11:40 pm
by bloke
I get it, but my goal in life is not really to get refunds for shipping things after screwing around for hours trying to get those refunds... and the professional shippers failing. As I don't have a job or a salary, my hours have to count for something other than "pursuing refund monies".
In the meantime, the customer is probably having second thoughts as to whether they actually even want the stuff that they bought - and never got... particularly as they expected to get it in about two days, and the stuff disappeared off the face of the earth for two months before resurfacing right back here from where it was sent.

Re: mailing/shipping...It would be interesting if...

PostPosted: Thu May 17, 2018 10:29 am
by Tom
I actually am actually doing this in my own little tiny corner of the world...

The company I work for (orchestra) owns some equipment that is very rare and very expensive but is necessary/required for some very famous and very popular orchestral and opera scores. Others come to us seeking that equipment, which we offer on a rental basis that must be sent via freight (truck). I wear many hats in my position, including managing the equipment rental operation:

When I started with this company the system was a mess. My company would rent the equipment and arrange and pay for the freight charges initially, then bill the renter for those costs. Equipment would arrive too early or too late on a regular basis (despite being shipped on the dates the renter requested) and I often received complaints about the cost of shipping - I had a preferred vendor, not the cheapest, that I used because they tended not to destroy my company's stuff.

But dealing with the issues and complaints got out of hand - the renters were calling me every time anything happened (early/late/damaged/missing) because I had initiated all of the arrangements. The amount of time I spent running down those items on behalf of renters was unbelievable - and they didn't care if it was because they accidentally provided the wrong address, dates, recipient name, etc., etc.

So, I changed that.

Now the renter sets up and pre-pays their own round trip freight. They are then in control of when the shipping happens, how much it costs, and they are the ones to deal with the shipper if the freight is early, late, missing or damaged. Now the rental fee gets pre-paid and we are requiring a certificate of liability insurance that also names us as a loss payee with respect to the rented equipment (real commercial insurance, NOT shipping insurance from the shipper). Shipping insurance, by the way, is worthless and we do not accept it here as evidence of insurance, but if a renter wants to do it anyway, then that's on them.

Now they just notify me of who the carrier is and when the pick up is, and I have the equipment ready on the loading dock provided the renter has paid and lined up their (real) insurance.

It is SO much better to have the recipient in control of the shipping. I know this is a little different since it's a freight situation and since it is a rental situation (and I really do want the stuff back in one piece!), but the concept remains the same - recipient controls the shipping.

These days I get zero calls regarding rental equipment shipping other than "XYZ Freight will be there between 9am-12pm on ABC date for pick up, thanks." I strongly prefer it that way!

Re: mailing/shipping...It would be interesting if...

PostPosted: Thu May 17, 2018 11:13 am
by bloke
Tom wrote:I actually am actually doing this in my own little tiny corner of the world...

The company I work for (orchestra) owns some equipment that is very rare and very expensive but is necessary/required for some very famous and very popular orchestral and opera scores. Others come to us seeking that equipment, which we offer on a rental basis that must be sent via freight (truck). I wear many hats in my position, including managing the equipment rental operation:

When I started with this company the system was a mess. My company would rent the equipment and arrange and pay for the freight charges initially, then bill the renter for those costs. Equipment would arrive too early or too late on a regular basis (despite being shipped on the dates the renter requested) and I often received complaints about the cost of shipping - I had a preferred vendor, not the cheapest, that I used because they tended not to destroy my company's stuff.

But dealing with the issues and complaints got out of hand - the renters were calling me every time anything happened (early/late/damaged/missing) because I had initiated all of the arrangements. The amount of time I spent running down those items on behalf of renters was unbelievable - and they didn't care if it was because they accidentally provided the wrong address, dates, recipient name, etc., etc.

So, I changed that.

Now the renter sets up and pre-pays their own round trip freight. They are then in control of when the shipping happens, how much it costs, and they are the ones to deal with the shipper if the freight is early, late, missing or damaged. Now the rental fee gets pre-paid and we are requiring a certificate of liability insurance that also names us as a loss payee with respect to the rented equipment (real commercial insurance, NOT shipping insurance from the shipper). Shipping insurance, by the way, is worthless and we do not accept it here as evidence of insurance, but if a renter wants to do it anyway, then that's on them.

Now they just notify me of who the carrier is and when the pick up is, and I have the equipment ready on the loading dock provided the renter has paid and lined up their (real) insurance.

It is SO much better to have the recipient in control of the shipping. I know this is a little different since it's a freight situation and since it is a rental situation (and I really do want the stuff back in one piece!), but the concept remains the same - recipient controls the shipping.

These days I get zero calls regarding rental equipment shipping other than "XYZ Freight will be there between 9am-12pm on ABC date for pick up, thanks." I strongly prefer it that way!


I sized up Tom as "a very smart person" years ago.
Leave it to Tom, then, to figure stuff out years before I do.

Re: mailing/shipping...It would be interesting if...

PostPosted: Thu May 17, 2018 4:03 pm
by bloke
I emailed the Postmaster General of the United States of America to get some action.
Mrs. bloke is actually talking (in "real time", no less) to someone in that office about this, but - guess what...?? -
they are emailing her some forms (so far: not received) and - so far - no refund of
postage of a "Guaranteed Express" (international) shipment that disappeared and arrived back here
TWO MONTHS after it having been sent (at a passed-on-to-the-customer cost of 130 friggin dollars) :shock:

The reason we have not (simply) yet gone ahead and refunded the customer (before trying to get back the money from the USPS) is because we strongly cautioned the customer ~against~ using this particular service (as we've not had good luck with it, and "regular" service has arrived just as fast, and incident-free).

The dysfunction here, I tend to believe, is that the USPS is subcontracting these types of shipments to an (unnamed, here, but household name) private company. When the USPS tried to refer us to their subcontractor, we stuck to our (correct) talking point that we did no business with their subcontractor.
================================
update:
form received...a very low-tech form...read questions/write answers legibly...scan it...email it back.
I googled the person to whom Mrs. bloke was talking...Their home is in Alexandria only two-miles-as-crow-files from the Potomac...high-priced real estate...
HOPEFULLY, we'll (at least) get our customer's refund for them...
...but (well...) the customer's STUFF is (after TWO MONTHS) here, and not there... :roll: