There was a time not long ago, when free shipping with your mail order offer was considered a unique perk. Nowadays a Direct Marketer can’t afford not to send out an offer that doesn’t include free shipping. It’s definitely become the game changer that can decide the success or failure of an advertising campaign.
Living in the world of Amazon Prime’s unlimited free shipping for an annual 1X fee has changed consumer expectations on what they think it should cost for their products to be shipped: Zero.
This is obviously not great news for direct marketers who have a real and substantial cost for shipping. Increasing product costs to absorb shipping fees is often not a solution since the only thing more sensitive to a consumer than a shipping fee is a price point.
The good news is that smart marketers are using sharper creative, micro targeting, better valued free premiums, and extensive offer testing to keep their margins from falling in the free shipping era. These may not be full proof solutions for falling margins, but it’s pretty much a sure bet that free shipping is a mainstay not to be going away anytime soon.