Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Too Big for the USPS?

Is that possible?

It kind of is.  At least, it's possible to be too big for our little local branch of the U.S. Post Office.  We live in a small town.  The sort of town where, if you sneeze, you miss us while traveling in between Hasbrouck Heights and Carlstadt.  We ship our packages from our local branch of the post office; the service is good there, I love the employees, and it's right next to the 7-11, so I can get good coffee and an Entenmann's danish in the morning.

(Have you noticed how good 7-11 coffee is?!)

On the website, we offer $5 flat rate Priority Mail shipping, no matter the size of your order, to anywhere in the United States.  That's feasible because most orders fit into the small flat-rate shipping box.
The flat rate boxes?  Awesome invention, and kudos to the USPS for doing it.  But sometimes we have larger orders, like our gift baskets.

With all the cellophane done up pretty and the raffia tying it at the top, these fit perfectly into the medium flat rate boxes.
We don't charge any more for shipping those even though they're more expensive.  We figure if you're shelling out for enough Reef Botanicals products to warrant the use of that box, we'll eat the additional shipping fees.

Anyway, a good portion of your purchases are just a hair too big for the small flat rate box but don't rate the medium box.  They get the nearly-cubic Priority Mail box, which isn't flat rate, but a great size when a customer orders scrubs or just too many things for the small box.
So... every time I'm at the post office, I grab the few small flat rate boxes they've got out in the display and one or two medium boxes, just so I've got them around when you guys order something.  It's faster than having to run to the post office, get the boxes, run home, pack up the orders, and go back again to ship them.  I prefer to pack the boxes at home because we use the click'n'print feature which allows for free tracking on the package, so we can keep an eye on things in case anything goes awry and you don't get your delivery.  I also used to grab a few of those nearly-cubic boxes while I was there, but they stopped putting them out and you have to ask for them one at a time.

I had shipments to get out today, one in a small box, one in that nearly-cubic box.  I only had one small box left, and none of the cubes, so off to the post office I went.  I asked for 5 of the cubes so I don't have to go back again immediately, and my favorite chick there gave them to me... and then kind of admonished me.  They'd realized that every time I walked in, all of the small flat rate boxes & cubes were walking out.  Apparently, they simply don't have the capacity to handle your average walk-in flat rate Priority Mail customer and Reef Botanicals.  We're growing too fast and they can't accommodate!

Personally, we think that's pretty funny.  And pretty cool.

So thank you.  Thank you to our customers who made us too big for our post office and gave us a good laugh.

Don't worry.  I've ordered a slew of the Priority Mail boxes directly from the USPS website, as directed by the chick who admonished me.  You'll still get your stuff!

(Oh, and if you're Canadian?  You get flat-rate $5 shipping for regular mail, no matter the size of the order.  If you want international Priority Mail, contact us and we'll talk.)


Amy W said...

I was hoping you figured out how to order boxes directly from USPS.com. That's the only way to go!! :)

Larissa said...

Ha, the funny thing is, I order stamps on the site, I do click'n'print on the site... I have no idea why it didn't occur to me to order boxes from the site!

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