A couple of weeks ago I received an email through my online store from a customer regarding a pair of earrings that read:
"I would love to buy these but the postage is just unrealistic."
The item she wished to purchase is $6. Postage is $6.60.
I responded to her email, and explained why postage is $6.60. I'd like to share this reason with you also, so you can better understand the struggle at times of being a handmadie and what we sometimes have against us.
Australia Post USED to charge $4.50 to send parcels within Australia that were under 500g. Australia Post USED to charge around $6.50 to send prepaid satchels within Australia that were under 500g. Australia Post USED to charge around $10 to send prepaid satchels within Australia that were under 3kg. All 3 are reasonable rates, which customers were very happy to pay and there were no questions or issues.
A Christy Production USED to send earrings, hairclips and other accessories via the regular postal service in a $1.20 envelope. I would label the envelope each time "DO NOT BEND" or "FRAGILE", depending on what the contents were.
Australia Post does NOT offer a "FRAGILE" service. If you post something via regular post, it is thrown into a very large mail bag with hundreds of other items. If you post a parcel, or prepaid satchel, it is thrown into a very large mail bag or box with MANY other parcels & prepaid satchels, most of which are bigger & much heavier than the items I am posting. While using the regular postal service, I quickly came to realise that nine times out of ten, the items were arriving to their new owners damaged or broken. I had to replace or repair these items at my own extra expense.
Australia Post put up their prices. Parcels under 500g now cost $6.60 to send. Prepaid satchels for under 500g now cost $7.85 to send. Prepaid satchels for under 3kg now cost $12.85 to send.
I now ship all items that can be damaged in transit, as a parcel or prepaid satchel. I put cubes of cork on earring backs so they can’t be bent back. I use copious amounts of bubble wrap on each product to keep them “safe” while in transit. I, like many other handmadies, gift wrap all items purchased before sending them to their new owners.
I do not charge my customers for any of these extra services. I do not charge for bubble wrap. I do not charge for envelopes. I do not charge for sticky tape. I do not charge handling fees. I do not charge to gift wrap. I do not charge petrol for the copious amount of times I travel to the post office each week.
With the sale of a pair of $6 earrings which has a postage fee of $6.60, so that is $12.60 in total, can you guess how much money I make? I make $1. Yes, $1. I am not telling you this for pity, or for any reason other than to perhaps open your eyes. Please respect the prices that handmadies charge for their wares.
If you have an issue with the amount that is asked for postage, remember that your quarrel is not with the person you are purchasing the item from. It is with Australia Post. So feel free to take it up with them.