Holiday Shipping 2021

Getting ready for the holidays can be stressful enough! Everyone is busy making travel plans, buying presents, and trying to figure out when they need to ship those presents in order to get them there before the big day. As a thank you, many also like to give gifts to their local shipping carriers and others who provide services throughout the season. 

Now, when you start talking about the holidays from a merchants perspective, things are a bit different. Retailers have a bevy of things on their mind and the last thing any of them want to hear is the phrase “Holiday Shipping Deadlines” on top of it. They just want to relax with some eggnog after spending hours finalizing POs and inventory quantities. 

There’s no doubt that mail carriers are the most popular people during the holiday season—and the busiest. Under normal circumstances, people wouldn’t be starting to say “Tis the Season” until after Thanksgiving, but a lot has changed in the past year. Ecommerce purchases have skyrocketed leaving shipping carriers scrambling to get packages to their destination without any hiccups. Let’s dive a little deeper.

Rumors of Supply Chain Disruptions

As everyone in ecommerce knows, the pandemic has affected global supply chains worldwide, as well as caused disruptions in transportation and shortages of both goods and people to deliver them. According to the Wall Street Journal, even big retailers, like Walmart and Amazon, have been struggling to get sufficient space on shipping containers. That’s why ordering stock, setting shipping deadline reminders (for your staff and customers), and potentially hiring extra staff are critical this season. To make your life easier we’ve compiled the 2021 shipping deadlines from all the major carriers. We also went ahead and outlined a few ways you can prepare your business for peak season!

2021 Shipping Deadlines

As an ecommerce business, this time of year is so busy it’s hard to think straight — so let us do the thinking for you! While consumers are eager to find the right gifts for their loved ones, you’re eager to provide them with that gift. Make sure your consumers get their products on time this year with Ordoro’s 2021 Shipping Deadline Calendar. 

DOWNLOAD CALENDAR

How to Prep Your Business

By taking extra time to prepare for the holiday rush you will ensure this season is smooth sailing for yourself and your team. Here are some steps you can take to prepare your business:

Purchase your packaging and shipping supplies early.

For Holiday Shipping 2021, it’s suggested that you order supplies by November 1st. There’s no way of telling whether shipping supplies like packing materials will be included on the next list of shortages, so the sooner, the better. 

Update your inventory.

Use last year’s top-selling products to help order the correct amount of stock.

You want to have enough of your most popular items in stock to meet a holiday surge. Ideally, you’ll want to have a sufficient quantity of the items that were most popular last year, along with some test quantities of new items that you’ve noticed increasing in popularity more recently. 

Analyze trends. 

If an item starts to go viral on social media in mid-October, you want to be ready. The holiday season is the best time to take advantage of all the trends you’ve been seeing while analyzing your sales data.

Organize your stock.

Knowing where your stock is and how it is organized is important, too. You want the most popular items closest to the door for a fast, easy exit. 

Share Ordoro’s Shipping Deadline calendar with employees, suppliers, & manufacturers.

Print, email, and share our 2021 Shipping Deadlines calendar with everyone you work with. Being on the same page with the same goals will make everyone jolly this season.

How to Alert Your Consumers

Ironically, procrastination is one of the most common ways that people deal with stress, and for many, the holidays are full of it. Those in ecommerce are well-positioned to give their customers advance notice of changes that can result in shipping delays. For example, the USPS Holiday Shipping Deadlines 2021 may be affected by the recent changes that went into effect on October 1st. One of those changes is an increase in time-in-transit standards for packages traveling longer distances. That means packages are going to have to be ready to mail a few days earlier than they were last year. Your customers will appreciate you giving them the inside scoop as the holidays are fast approaching. Here are some tips to help keep your customers happy this season: 

Share shipping news and deadlines on your website, social media, or email.

Add a popup message to your website or post a social media alert informing consumers of the shipping deadlines for the shipping carriers you use. Your holiday emails can also include any updates or deadlines to help your consumers plan ahead.

Suggest that customers purchase early.

Maybe start your holiday specials a little earlier than past years to get the ball rolling. You want your customers to realize that it isn’t YOU trying to rush them, right? 

Explicitly, alert your customers well in advance of the last day they can purchase your products.

When their packages arrive on time for the holidays, they’ll appreciate your gentle suggestions to help them avoid the consequences of procrastination—and enjoy the rewards of preparation.