One of our number one requests from customers is that we offer free shipping. As much as we really, really want to, shipping is a very real and expensive cost for businesses, especially small businesses.
Big companies like Amazon get the best rates on the market because they ship so much volume. So the more volume a company ships, the better rate they get. Small businesses are stuck with the tough decision of losing sales (to Amazon) or losing money (by offering free shipping), unless they offer highly differentiated products and service (which is our goal here at RepRap).
As a long-term oriented business, we'd rather lose some money now to gain sales in the future, but we also have to put food on the table for our families today, so it's a delicate balance.
Shipping in the Filament Business
Shipping costs are influenced by a variety of factors, but one of the major ones is the product weight. One of RepRap's primary products is filament, which is very heavy for its cost.
For example, take the Palette 2, which is 8 kg for $799 in revenue. On the contrary, when we sell 8 kg of filament, we only receive between $200-$300 in revenue. But the shipping companies charge the same rate whether it's the Palette 2 or filament; all they see is 8 kg.
E-Transfer: "Money Costs Money"
This is a saying the bossman (Steve) often says. Every time you, the customer, buy something from us online, our payment processing system takes a percentage of that money and puts it into their pockets. So for more expensive items (ie. the Palette 2), they take more.
The most common way to avoid this is to get customers to pay in cash, but that's just unreasonable in today's day and age.
Another way that RepRap has identified is e-transfer! Most of the time this is free to the customer and free to us. So what we have decided is that for the Palette 2, if the customer is willing to take the time to e-transfer us, we will ship it to them for free :)
An Unlikely Union: Free Shipping & E-Transfer
If a customer wants free shipping on orders containing the Palette 2 or Palette 2 Pro, all the customer has to do is select "e-transfer" under payment type at checkout, put ETRANSFER as the discount code, and then e-transfer the final amount to firstname.lastname@example.org.
If you have any questions or problems, feel free to contact us at 780-758-6263, email@example.com, or the chat bubble at the bottom right-hand side of your screen :)
Thanks for reading!