We all object to freight bills. They are a necessary annoyance in business that produces no value, just cost. Plants are perishable, breakable and bulky. The days of free delivery are long gone.
If you think that my delivery charge is too high, consider that I allow you to ‘pick-up’ at no charge. If you are the garden center owner, who doesn’t get paid, then ‘pick-up’ can save you money. But if you must pay your worker to take a truck and travel more than an hour, then the cost equation changes.
I get occasional complaints about my delivery charges, so my examples will be about Gary’s Specialty Plants. The rules are:
10% of total order per stop.
Maximum: $75 (local) / $100 (long distance)
This means orders from $400 to $750 pay 10%. This protects smaller orders. For long distance, the breakaway point is $1,000.
Once you reach the maximum ($750 or $1,000), larger orders start reducing the percentage cost. Local orders of $1,500 have a charge equal to 5%. Long distance orders of $2,000 have a charge equal to 5%.
Conclusion: You can cut your freight bill in half by doubling your order beyond the maximum limit.
It’s obvious that I would want you to double your order. It’s more efficient. And I take in more money.
Garden Centers have their own pace. You know how much inventory you need to fill your space. You want fresh material all the time, so only stock what you can sell in a few weeks.
Be conservative in buying until you see that plants are moving out the door faster.
You need a supply of all our sizes — 2.5” pots, 9.5 cm pots, 4.5” hanging baskets and 6” hanging baskets. By working all sizes, the total easily goes up.
Find ways to sell more. It’s the core of retail. Have promotions, workshops, “2 for” sales. Feature unique plants — that’s what we have.
Use the freight savings to promote something. If you double to $1,500 order, you have $75 to do something with.
We both want to double your sales.
If you have multiple locations, get one combined order and redistribute yourself.
Split an order with a neighbor.
Decide that one time a year you will risk a bigger inventory and see what happens. (Assuming promotion)
Bigger isn’t always better. But a little bit bigger is.
Find ways to sell more plants for yourself and save on delivery charges.
White paper — Gary’s Specialty Plants