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| | |-+  Saving on shipping costs........getting tougher
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: Saving on shipping costs........getting tougher  ( 1772 )
sofadoc
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All types of upholstery.....except cars and boats.


« : February 03, 2015, 09:32:00 AM »

I've always bought supplies in bulk from delivery trucks in order to avoid shipping costs.

My grandparents/parents who started the family upholstery business used to order supplies as needed. So they paid freight charges on every last little item. I thought this was foolish. So when I took over, I immediately ceased this practice. My goal was to pay shipping charges for fabric only. And for many years, I accomplished that goal.

But lately, a couple of my supply trucks have folded. And a couple others have reduced their inventory to the bare essentials. Foam, batting, staples, thread, etc. Plus, they have cut back to quarterly deliveries instead of monthly.
One of them has hinted that he really isn't interested in coming my way unless I order EVERYTHING from him alone.

I've already shifted most of my foam/batting orders to an out-of-state company that ships for free on orders over $100.

But now I find myself paying shipping on items like glue, welt cord, webbing, button molds, etc.

Are you guys seeing this problem (fewer choices from supply trucks) on the rise?


"Perfection is the greatest enemy of profitability" - Mark Cuban
JuneC
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« #1 : February 03, 2015, 10:40:45 AM »

Shipping is a big hit to the bottom line.  In S. Florida there are no supply trucks, per se.  Several companies will deliver what you order, but for a fee.  It's less than UPS, but still not free.  It's one of the reasons I like Keyston Bros.  They'll deliver the day after I order for $6.

The problem I have with some large suppliers, like TriVantage is that you never know what they've got and where.  So you place an order and you may pay 2 or more shipping fees.  I don't think they mark up the shipping, but it's not cheap.  And even though they have a Miami location, they won't deliver anywhere local.  MiamiCorp also has several locations but at least you can see from their website how much they've got and where it is, so when you place the order you know if it's going to generate 2 or more shipping charges. 

"Horse sense is the thing a horse has which keeps it from betting on people."

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sofadoc
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All types of upholstery.....except cars and boats.


« #2 : February 03, 2015, 11:13:21 AM »

I've seen this coming for several years now.

I had a supply truck coming from 75 miles west of me...........he always wanted me to phone in my order in advance so he could load my stuff last because I was going to be his FIRST stop.

Same from a supplier 150 miles to the south..........I was his FIRST stop.

And a quarterly supply truck 300 miles away..........you guessed it......I was his FIRST stop.

Even an out-of-state supply truck.........I'm STILL his First stop (at least in Texas, anyway).

There is 1 supplier in Dallas that would be happy to deliver to me for free. Only problem is, their prices are 40% higher than anyone else.

If I had a truck that would deliver for 6 bucks, I'd be all over that. I'm not even real demanding about quick delivery. Monthly is fine with me. What I hate, is paying UPS or FedEx $17 to deliver an item that only cost $12 to begin with.

"Perfection is the greatest enemy of profitability" - Mark Cuban
MinUph
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« #3 : February 03, 2015, 07:41:14 PM »

I am lucky, Mine is next door. Actually in the same building. Sorry all.

Paul
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gene
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« #4 : February 03, 2015, 09:03:30 PM »

$7.00 for a Friday delivery. It's close enough for me to pick up anytime if I want to take a short break from my shop.

My cell phone  battery recently died. $32.00 from the brick and mortar store here in town. It was $4.00 from Amazon with $4.25 shipping.

gene

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papasage
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« #5 : February 24, 2015, 09:15:07 PM »

have a supplier that delivers  every month  . charges a $15.00 drop fee  . i try to git  all supplies on the truck  and  most materials  . worked great  when i had over a month back log  but now  some time i  have to get  it  shipped  to  not have down time . now i  don`t care  i can go fishing  sense i am semi retired  drawing  SS .

just recovering 40 years
Mojo
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« #6 : March 01, 2015, 09:14:16 AM »

This has been one of our biggest margin boosters - shipping. It is one of the reasons I use no one but Miami. Our shipping charge for anything is a flat rate $ 15. They provide this through courier service in parts of Florida. Thankfully I am on that route.

1 - 50 lb roll of vinyl = $ 15
1 - 5 yard cut of acrylic = $ 15

If the order is light then they revert to UPS which is under $ 15.

I would be in a world of hurt if we had to pay UPS shipping costs on all of our goods. Our margins would get hammered. It is the same reason June sticks with her supplier - low or no shipping costs.

With that said we do have to bare an enormous shipping cost on our shipping boxes. U-Line is over the top on their shipping charges, to the point it is almost as much as the product. They are making money off the back end with shipping charges and it flames me to no end. But I cannot find another supplier of 8x8x48 inch boxes that are made with good quality and wont come apart with heavy vinyl inside them. They have us by the short hairs and they know it. if anyone knows of a good box company let me know. U-Line is killing us and we are in such a competitive market I cannot just pass these costs on to our customers. :(

Chris
baileyuph
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« #7 : March 03, 2015, 09:05:08 AM »

Shipping cost is and has gone up.  I tried to get free shipping on buying 3 rolls of goods but couldn't, vendor explained their cost of getting the goods is also going up.

Those with local suppliers are in advantage.

Boils down to we business owners have issues that have to be looked at and decisions made.

Makes one wonder how China (Asia) can build and ship from far parts of the world and still have the cheapest prices on things.  It is a given their cheap labor is their biggest advantage.

We are small business, I guess when we can buy a small truck load, the shipping won't be as much per item. 

Over recent years, my business has gravitated to a service (more labor/service) function than a retailer.  Merely can't compete with the discount retailers that have chains of stores across the country.

Everything is seeminly going up, taxes, etc.  Probably in five years these current prices will look cheap.  Therefore, we might have to work smarter and just keep on keeping on.

Keep your head up, never know tomorrow might make today look not as bad.

Doyle
MinUph
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Mainly furniture. Tarpon Springs Fl.


« #8 : March 03, 2015, 08:48:40 PM »

This has been one of our biggest margin boosters - shipping. It is one of the reasons I use no one but Miami. Our shipping charge for anything is a flat rate $ 15. They provide this through courier service in parts of Florida. Thankfully I am on that route.

1 - 50 lb roll of vinyl = $ 15
1 - 5 yard cut of acrylic = $ 15

If the order is light then they revert to UPS which is under $ 15.

I would be in a world of hurt if we had to pay UPS shipping costs on all of our goods. Our margins would get hammered. It is the same reason June sticks with her supplier - low or no shipping costs.

With that said we do have to bare an enormous shipping cost on our shipping boxes. U-Line is over the top on their shipping charges, to the point it is almost as much as the product. They are making money off the back end with shipping charges and it flames me to no end. But I cannot find another supplier of 8x8x48 inch boxes that are made with good quality and wont come apart with heavy vinyl inside them. They have us by the short hairs and they know it. if anyone knows of a good box company let me know. U-Line is killing us and we are in such a competitive market I cannot just pass these costs on to our customers. :(

Chris

Chris I know when I was in the computer manufacturing position boxes were an art form. Have you tried some other places like http://www.rpconline.com/ ? They can quote you on custom sizes and carry single double or triple wall corrugate. Located all around florida including Tampa.

Paul
Minichillo's Upholstery
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Mojo
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« #9 : March 04, 2015, 07:12:39 PM »

Thanks Paul. I will look into that.

Chris
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