The Word

  • Posted : 25/04/2006
  • Name: Mark Beeton
  • Subject: Time you reviewed your postage costs


" I think it's time you considered having a 'sliding scale' for delivery charges based on what is being ordered. Say, for example, I order a USB printer cable - this costs 53p inc VAT, and then you slap £7.00 (!) delivery charge on it. Surely items such as this can be delivered via Royal Mail rather than via courier, and then such an item would probably only cost the price of a couple of first-class stamps! Other than that - great service, great products!

Mark Beeton "

Scan's Action

" Great feedback here from Mark and some very valid points for us to work on. We do appreciate that on smaller value orders, the minimum carriage of £7 which our website calculates can sometimes mean we're not as cost effective as we'd like to be. In fact we've been looking at our delivery methods recently in the hope that we can offer a better value for money service to those customers. We realise that £7 carriage on a 50p cable doesnt represent good value and we do want to sort this out, even if it means that we look at using a different delivery company for these smaller orders.

To look at our cost effectiveness for postage as a whole we must consider the differences between weight and value. As many of our deliveries are very small and light consignments but of high value (CPU's and memory) and some are large consignment of low value (DVD media cases) there are many parameters which has made it difficult in the past to accurately calculate a tiered value delivery service. Instead, we use a courier that insures all goods (with a minimum charge of £7) at a price which increases dependent upon weight, rather than value.

This does admittedly mean that if you order a single cable at 50p the carriage would be £7...but on the flip side if you were to order a cable at 50p + a CPU at £300, the carriage will still be £7, due to the weight and volume. If you were to order a 50p cable + £300 CPU + £200 monitor + £100 case, the carriage would calculate at £10 or £15 and (within reason depending on what you ordered) it would not increase any higher than this at all.

As you can see, the cost effectiveness of ordering is greater for customers who spend higher amounts but this is something which is a reflection of the charges Citylink impose to us, and certainly doesn’t mean that we don’t value customers who spend smaller amounts on their orders.

All that said, we're still giving a lot of consideration to this and the good news is that we're working hard in the background to address it with the ultimate aim of putting in place a more efficient and cost effective "sliding scale" for delivery charges, as Mark suggested in his email.

Watch this space for developments in the near future and thank you to Mark for taking the time out to send us this feedback. :)

Roxane Wilkinson
Customer Support Manager "