Lost and Found Shipping
Your customer lost something and you’ve found it! Congratulations! How will you get it returned?
Well, you might have just found yourself in the exciting world of lost and found shipping.
Basics of Shipping
Shipping, the foundation of ecommerce, made popular by a small company called Amazon. In order to get one item from your property to your customer’s you will need a few basics.
- A destination address
- Size of the package; typically the box dimensions and weight
- Service level; will it be overnight express or can it wait ~7-14 days?
- Who is going to pay for the cost?
Of course, the basics of shipping are never just basic. There are a few additional complications.
- Insurance; if something happens to the package and you didn’t offer it, is it your fault?
- International shipping; ugh…
Lost and Found Shipping Particulars
- Customers send in a shipping label
- Shipping via Collect on Delivery
- Free shipping
- Credit Card authorization forms
- Customers send in a shipping label- slow return process, pushing a manual process onto the customer, and overall pretty awful experience.
- Shipping via Collect on Delivery- doesn’t allow for service choice for the customer and tends to run into huge headaches in deliverability (plus surprise bills are never fun).
- Free shipping- taking on cost for customers’ mistakes might be a nice customer moment but can add up quite quickly and is an important ownership verification requirement.
- Credit Card authorization forms- adding useless and inflexible paperwork to cause service delays is never a good option, even if it’s an SOP already.
Music Festival Lost and Found Shipping
For Music Festivals specifically, customers are rarely from the local area and there is a large number of lost items in a short period of time which can become a considerable challenge for event producers. Also, festival attendees tend to fall into two extreme needs:
- Extreme need- recover a wallet, passport, or ID to catch that flight back home.
- Extreme price sensitivity- after spending hundreds (possibly thousands) at an event, they’re a little price averse.
Shipping with the Liff App
So we need to build something flexible enough to address the attendees need but also scaleable enough to deal with the overwhelming amount.
The Liff Happens team loves the USPS flat rate supplies for a much simpler packaging experience (no need to weigh items) and good delivery speed versus overall cost.
With a preferred carrier selected, now you need to offer a customer a shipping option. With the Liff App, the staff chooses the box size at the point of matching and lets them take it from there.
The next step requires getting information from the customer, specifically an address and payment.
So once we have a match your customer picks up the ball with an email containing a special link to complete the shipping steps.
Customer: “Boom done! Whoop whoop!”
Amazon your Lost and Found
A customer has sent in their address and paid for a shipment so now your shipping operation kicks into high gear. The Lost and Found team will need to:
- Print the shipping label
- Pull the correct item
- Package and Label the item
- Get it sent out with a tracking update
Shipping Process Results
After running through those steps a few hundred times you have quite a few packages on hand. Drop them off or easily schedule a pick up by the carrier.
The customer automatically is notified with tracking information for the entire journey back home.