Shipping with Yodel: The Essential Guide for Small Business Owners
By Sam Smith
October 9th 2023
With the seemingly never-ending list of responsibilities you shoulder as a small business owner, even seemingly mundane tasks become crucial decisions – like choosing a suitable courier.
This guide is part of our Courier Guide series where we guide small business owners through the UK’s top delivery services.
In this article, we explore Yodel and they help small businesses ship their products all across the UK, including Northern Ireland. By the end, you’ll know if Yodel is suitable for your business and which of their courier services is best for your customers.
Yodel base their pricing on weight. Even if you’re delivering to a store, door, or sending from or to Northern Ireland, there’s no difference.
This makes Yodel one of the easiest couriers to work with. No faffing around with calculators – their simple price model means you can predict your shipping costs from day one.
Here are the pricing details:
|Weight||Price (incl. VAT)|
|3kg – 5kg||£5.61|
|6kg – 10kg||£6.61|
Pricing correct as of Thursday, 14 September 2023.
What is Yodel’s Store to Store?
Yodel offers two delivery options: Store to Store or Store to Door.
Store to Store requires you to drop your parcel off at a local Yodel shop. The courier will then deliver it to another Yodel shop closest to your reciepient’s location.
When a customer orders from you, make sure to give them the option to have it delivered to their local Yodel shop. For many who still work at the office, some customers feel safe knowing their parcel has been delivered to a real person and not a designated safe place.
What is Yodel’s Store to Door?
The difference with Store to Store and Store to Door is the final destination. In Store to Door’s case, they deliver to your customer’s door (be it residential or commercial). If the customer is not in when the courier attempts to deliver, there are multiple options they can choose:
- Deliver to a safe spot (like a porch or behind the bins)
- Deliver to a neighbour
- Retry another day
Where are Yodel’s drop off points?
There are over 6,000 drop off and collection stores across the UK. If you’re planning on shipping regularly with Yodel, find out where your closest store is. Yodel have their own location map to help.
Yodel Parcel Size
Yodel accept any box no bigger than 60x50x50cm. This is a great size for eCommerce sellers and B2B businesses who send small-to-medium sized items on a regular basis. Especially if you have delicate items that need a lot of protective padding.
For you, that means you can order any of our single or double walled cardboard box and be confident you won’t be penalised.
Outside of the standard rates, there are additional fees to be aware of:
- Extended Area Surcharge: If your parcel is going to a location outside of Yodel’s standard delivery areas, an additional fee applies. This fee is usually around £2.00.
- Heavy and Large Parcel Surcharge: Parcels weighing over 15kg or larger than the maximum size limits incur an additional fee. The cost typically ranges from £3.00 to £12.00, based on the weight and size.
- Failed Collection Fee: If a courier attempts to collect a parcel but is unsuccessful, a fee of £1.25 is applied.
Remember: These additional fees are on top of the standard delivery charges. Make sure to calculate these in when setting up delivery options for your customers.
With a clear understanding of Yodel’s shipping rates and fees, you can now make an informed decision. Consider how these costs align with your business model and customer expectations. After all, a happy customer is a repeat customer, right?
Do you sell bigger items, require faster delivery, and require multiple attempts to deliver? Yodel has three services to help.
Yodel Xpress is a great choice among small business owners who send small-to-medium parcels and want fast delivery.
Here’s why you should consider Yodel Xpress:
- Choose between Next Day and 2-day delivery
- Fully tracked
- They attempt delivery up to three times
- Customer messaging as standard
- Packages are delivere six different days each week from 7am to 9pm.
- £25 transit liability insurance on all parcels
Yodel Xpress Parcel Size and Weight
- Maximum weight: 17kg
- Maximum length: 90cm
Want to give your customers an accurate delivery time? Yodel Xpect offers two-hour delivery window so customers know exactly when the courier will arrive. Xpect is also great for businesses who ship large and heavy products.
Here’s why you should consider Yodel Xpect:
- Two-hour delivery window
- Customers informed by push notifications, SMS and email
- Next day and two-day services available
- Deliveries from 7am to 9pm, six days a week
- Up to three delivery attempts
- Trackable deliveries for POD and non-POD parcels
- Transit liability on POD services
- Real-time driver app
- Parcels up to 30kg and 170cm are able to be delivered on the service
Yodel Xpect Parcel Size and Weight
|Mini||Under 50cm||Under 3kg|
|Medium||Under 90cm||Under 17kg|
|Large||Under 120cm||Under 30kg|
|X Large||Under 170cm||Under 30kg|
Need a courier who specialises in:
- High value goods
- Address only deliveries
- Delivering to British Forces locations
- Handing product exchanges?
Yodel Xpert is for you. Just like the other services, Xpert offers precise parcel tracking and two-hour delivery notifications.
For parcel measurements, as long as it’s not over 30kg and 120cm long, you’re fine to send.
Need to send parcel to the Channel Islands or the Isle of Man? This service is dedicated just for these cases.
- Customs clearance included
- Choose from two or three day delivery options
- 3 delivery attempts and then drop-off at local post box
- Delivered Monday to Friday between 7am to 9pm
Yodel Offshore Parcel Measurements
Just like with Yodel Xpert, the only requirements are:
- Maximum weight: 30kg
- Maximum length: 120cm
Insurance plays an integral role in the shipping process, offering that extra layer of protection for your valuables. Yodel offers comprehensive insurance options for small businesses, ensuring the safe and secure delivery of your parcels.
For both Door to Store and Door to Door, Yodel includes £50 compensation in most orders. There are a few items that are now covered, including:
- Ceramics, Porcelain, China, Stone, Granite, Marble
- Gold, Silver, Gems, Diamond
To check if you’re item is excluding from compensation – including items that are covered for loss only – check Yodel’s prohibiited items’ list.
For any value over £50 (and up to £1,000), you’ll pay an additional 5% of the value for compensation cover. Here are some examples:
|Value of item||Additional cost for protection|
Note: items over £1000 value will only be covered up to £1000 in compensation. For example, if you made a claim on the £1250 item (a gaming laptop, for example), you’ll only be able to claim £1000 maximum.
Tracking Your Parcel with Yodel: A Step-by-Step Guide
Knowing where your parcel is, and when it is going to arrive, is vital for any small business. Thankfully, Yodel provides an easy to use tracking system that you can use to keep an eye on your parcel’s progress. Here’s how you can do it:
- Visit Yodel’s tracking website
- Enter your tracking number
- Click ‘Track’
Step 1: Choose the Right Box
When shipping with Yodel, your package’s first line of defence is the box. It’s vital to choose a sturdy, well-fitting box that fits your items snugly, but still leaves room for protective padding. Remember, Yodel doesn’t only handle small packages – they can also cater to larger, bulkier items.
Step 2: Protect Your Items
Once you’ve got your box sorted, it’s time to think about protecting what’s inside. Use bubble wrap, foam peanuts, or other protective material to cushion your items. The goal is to prevent movement within the box during transit.
|Item||Recommended Protective Material|
|Fragile items (e.g., glassware)||Bubble wrap|
|Sensitive Documents||Bubble Padded Envelope|
|Books, clothing, other non-fragile items||Foam peanuts|
Step 3: Seal the Box Securely
Now that your items are snug and secure, it’s time to seal the box. Use strong, wide tape (at least two inches wide) to secure all seams and flaps on the outer box. Avoid using string or cord, as these can get caught in Yodel’s machinery.
Step 4: Label Correctly
Finally, you’ll want to label your shipment correctly. Yodel will provide a printable label, so you don’t have to stress about writing names and addresses. As it’s provided as a A4 printable, it means you can use A4 Label Sheets to quickly print and stick without worrying about extra tape.
If you do need to use tape, make sure to not tape over the barcode. Even if the address becomes unreadable, that barcode will tell the courier everything they need to know. It’s also a good idea to place a duplicate label inside the box in case the outside label becomes damaged.