How To Ship Large Decals

How To Ship Wall DecalsI have recently had readers asking me how I package and ship my decals.  I thought this was a good topic to cover so I even made a video to supplement this post.  You can see the video below.

NOTE: Although this articles discusses a good method for those starting out in the decal business, I have provided an update as to my current method of shipping large decals.  Click Here: How I Ship My Wall Decals… TODAY!

Now, I initially thought I should name this post “How I Ship Large Decals“, but for SEO purposes, I wrote it in more general terms.  But, I should explain that this is MY approach for shipping decals because it provides the criteria by which I like to ship my decals.

I will explain that next.  But, I want to make it clear: my methods should not be taken as a standard approach to shipping decals.  In fact, I am not sure what the standard approach is, if there is one.

However, now that I am discussing and sharing my approach to shipping wall decals, I think I will research this a little further and even ask around in the forums to see what I can find out.  Maybe I need to tweak my methods a bit. Who knows?  But, if I find I do need to make some changes, I will be sure to share that with you right here on this blog.

For the time-being, this is the way I handle shipping, starting with my criteria for shipping decals.

My Criteria for Shipping Decals

#1: Fast Shipping – Being able to get the decal out to the customer within 2 or 3 days of shipping helps me in two ways:

  1. I do not feel rushed to get the order out soon as I receive it.  I can wait a day or two for orders to accumulate and then send them all at once.
  2. Once shipped, the decals are not being hauled around and stored for days waiting for its arrival.  Shipping time within the US is 2 to 3 days, which is great!

#2: Low Costing – The less it costs me to ship, the less I have to burden the customer for more money.

#3: Convenience – I just don’t have time!!

So how do I meet my short criteria list above?  Let start with shipping within the US…

Shipping Decals Within the US

For shipping large decals within the US, I found that by using USPS Priority mail I get the best bang for my buck.  It meets all my standards.  For example:

  • Priority Mail within the US ships fast!  Only 2 or 3 days and the package is there.  And if they live within your state, there is a good chance it will be there in 2 days or less.
  • Priority Mail within the US is fairly cheap.  I was currently paying anywhere from $5.34 to $6.20 to ship anywhere in the US, including Alaska and Hawaii.  That has changed only recently so you may see a difference of .20 to .30 cents increase in the cost of shipping Priority.
  • Priority mail boxes are also cheap.  Very cheap.  In fact they are totally FREE!  You can even have them shipped to your house for free. And you can aks for several cases of these shipping boxes.

How? Do it online at USPS.com.  You can create a free account, locate the shipping items you want, add them to your cart, checkout, and pay nothing – ALL AT YOUR CONVENIENCE.  Those items will arrive in about 10 working days, more or less.  So, order early.

I order two sizes of boxes.  For my smaller decals, less than 14 inches wide or tall (length does not matter), I use the Priority Mail Shoe Box (7.5” x 5 1/8” x 14 3/8″).  For my larger decals, more than 14″ inches, I use the Priority Mail Tube Small (26″ x 6″ x 6″).  I explain how I use them in more detail in the video below.

Here is a picture with all the shipping boxes and envelops I use within the US and Internationally.

Shipping Supplies

(I Ship Priority Mail within the US only)

Shipping Decals Internationally

Here is where I throw my criteria for shipping totally out the window.  I can’t seem to find cheap and fast at the same time.  Because of that I have to settle for slow and secure.  I do this by shipping the decals with USPS First Class International mail.  First Class is the cheapest and slowest you are going to get with USPS.  And it’s not cheap.  So, what do I do?

Unfortunately, I have to pass the cost to my International customers and have them pay for the approximate cost of shipping First Class International mail.  It will cost me about a dollar more to ship to Canada via Fisrt Class. So, you will find that the price for shipping for my customers in my Etsy shop reflects that.  For all other countries, I charge $6 dollars above the Domestic shipping price, which has been just about right for most of my international sales.  But, now with the price of shipping with the USPS going up, I may need to adjust my numbers a bit.  I will worry about that, if need be, when the time comes.

Now, instead of shipping with boxes from USPS, I purchase boxes from a local shipping supply store.  I purchase in bulk, about 25 tubes (3” x 26”), at the cost of $1.19 per tube with end caps.  The good thing is you do not need to use the whole size of the tube for smaller orders.  You can cut them down to size and keep the other half for future shipping. You can purchase end caps separately for those additional tubes you make.

The advantage of using these tubes for international shipping is that they are extremely sturdy and the decal is well sealed secured in the tube.  So, the whole idea of a long journey for my decals is easier for me to accept using these tubes .  The other option would be to ship Priority Mail International and pay a very hefty price in the attempt to get it there as fast as possible – They say 6 to 10 business days to get there and it will cost you up to 3 times more to ship.  Too much for me to even ask someone to pay for a $16.00 decal. So, USPS First Class International mail in a shipping tube is my choice for shipping out of the country.

How Much Do I Earn for Shipping and Handling?

Zero. Zilch. Nada. Or at least close to that.

I find shipping cost for my customers to be so burdening for me to ask for and for them to dish out.  But, that’s the cost of buying online and getting things shipped.  So, I try to make shipping as easy as possible for me so I do not have to feel the burden of packaging and sending my decals.

As you can see I have tried to conquer this by having the US Post Office ship me MOST of my shipping boxes to my house for free so I do not have to go out and purchase it.  Now, that’s convenience!  When I do purchase my supply of tubes, I purchase in bulk.  That way I do not have to go back to the shipping supply store very often – maybe 2 or 3 times a year – and each tube cost less.  By the way, if you are in this as a business, do not buy your shipping supplies from your office supply store, unless an emergency.  You will pay through the nose at those locations.  Find a local shipping supply store or go online.  I will add my local shipping supplier to the Resources page on this site.  I will provide a link there.

I can also have the Post Office pick up my mail right at my house.  However, since I do work a full-time teaching job during the day, I really do not trust leaving my boxes out for the mail carrier to pick up.  Luckily, the post office is just a couple of blocks from my house.  So, I drop off my mail in the morning just before work.  No problem there.

So, to encourage customers to buy my decals without feeling cheated for the price for shipping, I charge a just-above-average price for shipping.  Sometimes I make about .20 to .40 cents over the price of shipping.  Then, less times I may pay $.25 over the default price of shipping.  In the end I think I break even in that department because I do pay for other shipping supplies like shipping tape and filler paper, like I use in the video.  So, I make nothing on shipping and I cover the cost with the trickle I do get.  Just like for the customer, that’s the small sacrifice I have to pay to sell online.

The video below will give you some more insight into my shipping madness… Enjoy!

NOTE: Although this articles discusses a good method for those starting out in the decal business, I have provided an update as to my current method of shipping large decals.  Click Here: How I Ship My Wall Decals… TODAY!

 

 

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  • Emma

    I would like to know how do you set your decals you created in your computer so that you can easily find them when a customer makes a purchase? also Do you have different files, such as the one with the photo image of the decal and the living room, one with just the decal?
    thanks for your help,

  • i need to get shiping boxes from usps.com for 10in decals. i dont know what size box or envelope i need for a 10 in decal. and how much would it be to ship that box?

    • Jerry

      You might want to try a large envelop instead.

  • Laurie

    Hello. LOVE how generous you are with your information.

  • Rube

    Hi. Learned so much from your site. Thanks a bunch for sharing. I realized people like you is what makes the internet great. It’s sharing and handing down knowledge to people. Very cool.

  • Woggz

    Thank you for all your posts and links they have been very helpful