Admittedly, shipping logistics is the last thing on the mind of any entrepreneur planning a crowdfunding campaign for their product. However, failing to plan for fulfillment can significantly mar the success and profitability of your campaign. You may end up disappointing your backers with late deliveries, or worse still, you may spend all your money on shipping costs, taxes, and returns, leaving you with very little to no profit.
Hence, having a carefully outlined fulfillment strategy should be an essential part of any crowdfunding campaign. Here, we highlight seven important tips for planning and executing a successful crowdfunding fulfillment strategy:
Start Early and Plan Thoroughly
There’s no overemphasizing the importance of planning early when it comes to seamless crowdfunding fulfillment. Your planning should start as soon as you launch your campaign and should move up a notch once you conclude your backer survey.
Keep in mind that delays can occur at various stages of the fulfillment process, from production to shipping. Thus, you should identify potential bottlenecks and have contingency plans in place to address them. Importantly, share regular updates with your backers as that’ll make them feel part and parcel of the process.
Set Realistic Expectations
Backers greatly value transparency, and they expect crowdfunders to keep to their word regarding delivery timelines. That’s why we’ll always emphasize the importance of setting realistic expectations. Wherever possible, add a few days or weeks to the timeline provided by your fulfillment partner.
Ultimately, backers prefer brands that under-promise and over-deliver to brands that do the opposite. Thus, you should only give timelines you’re reasonably sure of, and if there’s any unavoidable change, ensure you communicate early enough.
Choose the Right Fulfillment Partner
Selecting the right partner for your warehousing, shipping, logistics, and other fulfillment-related activities is arguably the most crucial aspect of a successful crowdfunding fulfillment strategy. Before settling for any company, ensure you thoroughly vet them and verify they have the capabilities to handle all your fulfillment needs.
Furthermore, check their track record, and wherever possible, ask for first-hand reviews about their services. If you can work with a reliable fulfillment partner like Fulfillman, you’re well on your way to meeting deadlines and maintaining quality throughout every stage of the fulfillment process.
Financial management is a cornerstone of any crowdfunding fulfillment strategy. Remember, you’ll have to dedicate a share of your budget towards fulfillment. Typically, experts recommend setting aside 10-20% of your funds for fulfillment. However, the exact figure will depend on your product, the geographic distribution of your backers, and other project-specific factors.
The important thing is to ensure fulfillment is a part of your budget right from the onset, and choosing a fulfillment partner early enough can greatly ease the planning and budgeting. Furthermore, it’s always advisable to overestimate costs when budgeting as many variables may affect cost estimates between campaign launch and fulfillment.
Carry out Detailed Backer Surveys
Backer surveys play a crucial role in the crowdfunding fulfillment process, serving as a vital tool for project creators to gather essential information from their backers. These surveys are typically distributed after a crowdfunding campaign has successfully concluded and are designed to collect details necessary for fulfilling rewards.
Detailed backer surveys empower you to personalize fulfillment and ensure that backers get their rewards seamlessly. Interestingly, a thoughtfully designed and utilized survey can further contribute to the positive experience and overall success of your crowdfunding campaign.
Pay Attention to Quality Control
Prioritizing quality control can help avoid sub-par products, fulfillment delays, and frustrating product returns. You should aim to build quality into every stage of the production and fulfillment process, from manufacturer vetting to prototype and performance testing to packaging.
Once you’re able to achieve this, you can rest assured backers will receive the high-quality products they expect within the promised timeline. Consequently, they’re more likely to leave positive reviews and support your future endeavors.
Keep Communication Channels Open
One mistake you cannot afford to make is going silent at any stage of the crowdfunding process. Silence breeds fear and distrust, and that’s the last thing you want from people who took a leap of faith by backing your crowdfunding campaign.
Leverage social media channels to provide regular updates about the product, and if there’ll be any delays, let backers know ahead of time. An important rule in crowdfunding communication is to stay proactive rather than reactive. Staying proactive allows you to control the narrative, and you can only achieve that via prompt and honest communication.
Meticulous planning is an essential part of any crowdfunding fulfillment strategy. By adhering to the expert tips highlighted in this article, you can navigate your next crowdfunding campaign with confidence and guarantee a successful and satisfying experience for your backers. Importantly, choose a fulfillment partner that understands how crowdfunding campaigns work and the importance of ensuring utmost customer satisfaction when it comes to crowdfunding fulfillment.
Enjoy the Fulfillman Advantage
Are you looking for the right crowdfunding fulfillment partner for your next project? Look no further than Fulfillman. Our superior crowdfunding fulfillment services are all you need to make shipping and processing backer rewards for your campaigns seamless. We have in-house experts that have worked with several creators on Indiegogo, Kickstarter, and other crowdfunding platforms, and they’re ready to unleash their wealth of experience to help you deliver promptly. Contact us today to get a free quote!