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How Shipping Policies Helped Upgrade My Record-Selling Business

Shipping Policies are a requirement for all Sellers on Discogs starting November 1, 2020 (please note, the timeline for this requirement was recently adjusted. Read more about this update here).

Here at Discogs, we love helping sellers like you grow your business and sell more efficiently. One of the ways we’ve been assisting sellers to reach more buyers and provide a better shopping experience is through our Shipping Policies.

We want to illustrate the perspective from a longstanding and proficient seller, Andrew Cann, aka LilWang. After implementing Shipping Policies last year, his business has grown from strength to strength. This is a success story we’re keen for you to hear directly from the horse’s mouth.

Discogs: How have your day-to-day operations been impacted by updating your Shipping Policies on Discogs?

Andrew Cann: The Shipping Policy has had a really positive impact on day-to-day operations. Customers would mail questions for shipping prices to various destinations, which can become quite time-consuming for my small business. Once the policy was set up, my buyers could clearly see what they needed to pay for their order (including the shipping).

I would be hesitant to purchase without knowing a total price, so you can understand why this helps me and my buyers out. Alongside this, I’ve also found that — particularly with international orders — shipping questions regarding price sometimes came with confusion around language barriers. As much as Google Translate can be a useful tool, it sometimes could leave a bit of confusion on both ends!

D: Have you seen any changes in your buyers and/or sales?

AC: I’ve seen a good upturn in sales, especially multiple purchases, as prospective buyers can be tempted to order additional items when they can see it makes for a better value on the shipping. I’ve also seen an increase in bulk orders where couriers can offer much better rates than domestic services.

D: What convinced you to set up Shipping Policies?

AC: European Lead Russ Ryan [a resource for record sellers in Europe] contacted me and he convinced me it was worth setting up. He guided me through the initial process, then I had to work out how to best implement it to my business. Russ has been amazing with advice and support, and I think it’s a true testament to the Discogs community in how they operate and want to be the best platform for collectors and sellers.

D: What was the biggest challenge in setting up the Shipping Policies?

AC: The initial challenge was whether to go for shipping by weight or units; both have their pros and cons. You have to consider extra factors, such as packaging, which can obviously increase the weight of the item. I would say it’s best to get all your shipping prices together and then work it out by destination (ex: Europe, World Zone 1 and 2, as well as domestic).

D: Did you have any concerns before adopting Shipping Policies? If so, how have those panned out?

AC: I did initially have concerns, especially with countries where the postal service is a bit erratic. My personal solution was to only set up a service with tracked shipping, or not set one up and allow customers to mail me first so I can explain why a tracked service is better and allow them the option.

D: What would your advice be to sellers who are still setting up their Shipping Policies?

AC: For sellers that want regular orders and have a reasonable inventory, it’s a way to increase sales and encourage buyer confidence; no one wants an unforeseen extra to spoil their enjoyment of a purchase. Knowing the total cost of an order when placing it is pretty much the default way of online shopping these days, and it helps prevent the alienation of new customers who are maybe unfamiliar to buying on Discogs.

A huge Thank You to LilWang for taking the time out and detailing his experience so thoroughly. Be sure to go check his UK-based store for a broad range of great records, from dance to psych and everything in between.

Looking for more Shipping Policy info? Find everything you need, from set-up guides with video walk-throughs, shipping rate templates, webinar recordings, FAQs, and more here.

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