Ask Me Anything: Why Does Anarres Charge Calculated Cost for Shipping?

Q: My gosh Tracey, I admire your determination and staying power! On the other hand, what the hell else would you do? You are the Herbal Queen, to my mind, in Toronto. You MUST continue!

I know you have a delivery person, but that means people are still paying as if you shipped it to me. YOU are getting off easier, but not your customers. I wonder if perhaps you could set up a bi-weekly delivery schedule in the GTA that only charges, say, $5 to deliver what someone has ordered? As it grows you could make it free.

That's the model of our online local farmer's market called Clickfork. They started out small and have grown tremendously over the years. They're farmers who reliably deliver local, sustainably grown and organic produce, eggs, meats and (mostly) food products that they make in their commercial kitchen from the products they sell to a central location in Sudbury, Sturgeon Falls and North Bay, every other week. We go to the established delivery spot to pick up our order. In Sturgeon Falls it's a large parking lot of a hardware store. They'll do home deliveries for a flat fee of $15. Perhaps set up free delivery spots in TO, a central location in each of these areas, Halton, Peel, York and Durham? If people aren't reaching you easily, possibly include the City of TO as well.

A: Hi ********,

I've tried all sorts of arrangements!

Right now I am supporting Shahnaz and her fundraising so she can cross Canada on her bike to raise awareness of kidney disease.

We struggled last year to find a fair price for same-day and next-day couriering, and then I realized that I could simply use the Canada Post calculated rate based on package size and weight and distance, without having to negotiate each delivery.

Philosophically, I do not want offer "free" shipping because I would need to charge more for all of my products, the effect of penalizing pick-up customers for the shipping costs I incur. An online business that I make products for charges 20% extra for every single product to cover a $5 Flat Rate shipping. I do not want to penalize local pick-up customers. I believe in us all relearning to shop as locally as possible.

The way shipping is calculated on my website, the first product costs $10-$15, then each additional item shipped is only a dollar or two more.

Thanks, Tracey,
Certified Natural Health Practitioner, Founder, Teacher


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