Should You Offer Free Shipping? [E-commerce]

free shipping ecommerce

When it comes to free shipping for your e-commerce store, there’s a laundry list of competing theories.

These are the most common ones:

  • You should always offer it to boost conversion rate.
  • You should only offer it if a customer spends $X (incentivize them to spend more money).
  • You should never offer free shipping because of the cost.

While it’s easy to theorize about what might work, the answer requires some actual testing.

Mathias Schrøder, an e-commerce marketer, recently ran a test.

Instead of offering free shipping on orders over $99, he offered free shipping on all orders.

The results?

While conversion rate was about 7% higher, the average order value decreased by nearly 9%.

In the end, offering free shipping on all orders costs his brand nearly $90,000 per year.

What this means for you

Like many things in marketing, there’s not a one-size-fits-all answer to the shipping debate.

While it often boosts conversion rate, there are generally more factors at play.

To optimize your own conversions, test conditional free shipping at different dollar values: $30, $60, and $99, for example.

And test these free shipping dollar values against free shipping for everyone.

The more you test your shipping options, the more easily you’ll find the sweet spot for maximum profit.

Software Blade covers today's software and tomorrow's emerging technology.

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