Batch Delivery or Delivery to Homes?

It can be difficult to work out whether it’s more cost-effective or efficient to deliver prints to home addresses or stick with batch delivery.

We don’t know about you, but we rather hoped that the pandemic would bring about a positive shift in the way we approach a lot of things as a society.

While this may or may not have happened, it did change some of the ways in which we work.

Many years ago, it was the ‘sale or return’ method. Then, all orders were sent back to school. (A massive reduction in wastage!)

You’ll know the next step – the date to order for free delivery back to school, with any late orders having a delivery and/or admin charge on top.

We were still doing this until 2020.

Pandemic world brought about an extraordinary challenge for the photography industry.

Not content with riding it out and waiting to see if there was still a business at the end of it, we all needed a new way of working.

Composite prints were one thing, but delivery needed a rethink.

Free delivery to homes was born!

By burying the delivery charges in product prices and removing the deadline to order, our sales could be stretched out across the year.

Don’t worry – we still wanted to encourage the bulk of orders to be within those first few weeks of the shoot date. This is easily done with time-limited discounts.

And now, we wouldn’t look back.

The relief from our clients not to have to deal with boxes and boxes of prints is enough motivation to stick with this. (This can also help you with commission negotiations).

When a traditional ‘order by’ date would have been before payday for many families, they are no longer priced out of purchase.

In demonstrations and onboarding many photographers have posed the question of the possibility of batch delivery.

We do encourage anyone to consider their reasons.

“I’ve always done it that way”

“I want to check all the orders are right”

“It’s cheaper for me”

“I’m scared of losing sales”

These are valid concerns.  Let’s address them in turn.

1. If it aint broke, don’t fix it. This is true, but it doesn’t mean there isn’t a better way for you and your business. Consider your clients’ happiness with your service. What will you say when a competitor comes along and offers delivery to homes?

2. Fear of errors. In the scale of large printing labs, even a 99.9% rate of success could be hundreds of mistakes. If one has happened to you, you are wise to be wary of it happening again. Consider a service that handles customer queries and complaints for you – it’s the lab’s error, shouldn’t they be dealing with it for you?

3. Cost. Speak to us about pricing to maintain healthy margins without scaring away custom.

4. Control over sales. As mentioned, consider swapping the motivation for ordering by a date from free delivery to time-limited discounts. There’s no need to offer this discount on any and every product.

Hopefully this has helped you to decide between batch delivery, delivery to homes or a combination.

Let us know if there’s another reason why you’d rather stick with batch delivery – we’re always open to discussion and new ways of thinking!

In the end, it’s entirely up to you and what is the best fit for your business and schools.

Could you save 1/3 on your current costs? Request a demo.

P.S – If you do decide to continue with batch delivery, we can offer this at a flat rate of £10+VAT, no matter how many prints, frames, gifts, mounts etc. are included. Get in touch.

batch delivery school photographer