Folksy Ltd

Postage free or not?

afternoon all and hope that you are having a good 2015 - I’m sure this question has come up but just wondering if anyone has tried offering free uk postage and if this has increased their sales - I know when I was in Australia and working with a website similar to notonthehighstreet - they insisted on all sellers offering free postage as the postage cost put customers off - I’d love to hear any thoughts.

I know when I shop online and then see a postage cost at the end it can put me off a bit

I think most people realise that postage is very rarely ‘free’ if it’s not a separate amount then it’s usually worked into the item price. This has the advantage that you can see at a glance what you’re paying but if (like with my cards) it costs very little more to send 2 or 3 items than it does to send one then the customer can end up paying more than they need. If I was to add my p&p price (£1) to each card it would make them seem more expensive per card but as I only charge £1 for the first card and 30p extra for any additional cards on the same order it might encourage people to order more than 1 at a time.


I agree with the it’s never ‘free’ but just wondering psychologically where people then think that’s the cost and there’s nothing more to add when I go to pay? I see what you mean with your cards - that’s a hard one. Or where it’s worth making less profit per item so only costing in 50% of the postage into the cost price and then offering free postage - whether this would drive more sales?
I wonder if the folksy team have got any information on this? @Folksyadmin

I wouldn’t add the cost of the postage to your items as it increases the amount of fees you pay to Folksy. You pay Folksy X% (is it 6%?) of your selling price, but if you add the postage to it then you are increasing the selling price. There’s no need to pay more in fees than you need to.


What Liz said. That’s why many other websites similar to Folksy insist on you including postage in your price as they can then include it in their commission from you. I only charge postage for the one item, then any subsequent purchases made at the same time are free.

When the post office or couriers give free postage then so will I. I don’t mind paying postage but do appreciate a reduction if possible when I buy more than one item. Maybe a free postage offer for a limited time might be an idea, or on a further purchase. Marg. x


Probably depends on your item costs and your postage costs. I’m not going to add the postage into my items because I send them parcel post so that’s quite a lot of postage to add in, and take commission on. Plus I think people realise my items are heavy so will have a fair amount of postage to them. If I was selling stuff under a fiver, and the postage was under a quid, I might lump it all in together. Depends what the profit margins were in the item too.


Even supermarkets and fashion sites have delivery charges, so why should we have to send stuff for free? It’s bad enough that we are held legally responsible for delivery times and lost items, even though we have no direct control over those issues.

I couldn’t possibly give “free” postage, as that would mean my UK customers paying an extra £10 to cover international orders. I suppose if you are selling £200-£300 items then you can swallow postage costs, but not many of us are selling high ticket items.

While as a shopper I do appreciate free postage- I certainly wouldn’t expect it from a small seller! Postage is expensive.
However I did put my postage as free for a little while just out of curiosity while doing the same level of promoting, and I actually noticed I sell more when I charge for postage.
I generally end up short changing myself as I never charge enough to cover all postage costs- just sound of a rounded down close-to figure.

1 Like

I have free postage. Early last year I reworked my prices, so that I have a wholesale and retail price structure, and I wanted people that ordered from me online to pay the same as they would if they bought in a shop. The price of postage (and packaging!) is absorbed within my retail price structure (which is twice wholesale) as are any fees paid whether in an online shop or a bricks and mortar (B&M) one. I don’t change my prices when in a B&M shop to take into account any commission or fees, and so it’s the same with my online shop. And having been in a B&M shop Folksy is a lot lot cheaper, even with postage. At the end of the day I’m happy with how it works for me across the board.

As a seller, I prefer to keep postage costs separate.
And as a buyer I definitely prefer to see postage costs listed separately.

Sarah x

1 Like

I think I’ve sold more since I began charging for postage, but I only charge once for however many items in the order so sometimes it can be slightly subsidised. I took this into account with my pricing before I began charging. Works well in my opinion.

It might depend on what you are selling. If I was buying something fragile, free postage would worry me because I would wonder how well it was packed.

Sam x

1 Like

Some interesting points - maybe I’ll just have to try free postage and see what happens?!? Who knows what the right answer is.

Kez @kezylou I have noticed you applied Free shipping to your shop, have you noticed any increase in sales from doing so? Just curious as there was a twitter thing from Folksy not that long ago about how Royal mail think postage is the thing that stops people from the final stages of buying online, thought long and hard about it but as yet have not done anything!
Just wondering what others felt about it? Like to share your thoughts?
Suzzie x

I will do free postage once royal mail stop charging me. :smile:

There is no such thing are free postage it’s a con, a lie, the customer still pays for it but it’s hidden in the price of the item.

I like to know how much I’m paying for an item as a buyer. The only time I’m happy to see free shipping is from China as I know it’s free and not added to the item price. As in China businesses who sell abroad (export) have their shipping paid by their government to encourage exports.

When I see it on UK sites I see a con and know I’m likely to be paying an inflated price.


It was a topic for discussion on #folksyhour on Twitter in August. From what I remember it was to do with shoppers psychology, in that more shoppers will buy items even if they were more expensive if they saw it was free shipping.

Here’s the blog post about it:

1 Like

Thanks for finding the link Liz @BigBirdLittleBird I looked, thought I had saved it somewhere, but…
I agree with you its more about the psychology of the shopper thinking they are getting something for nothing.
Personally I believe free shipping works if you are buying a mass produced item and the item price is the same but someone is offering free postage, but with unique handmade items I believe people know we are little fish in a massive ocean, and that possibly because the item is a one off, and they have fallen in love with the it, and are willing to pay postage (?)
I had noticed Kez was offering it, and was just wondering what difference if any it had made to her sales, that is if she were willing to divulge such info! just wondered what others felt .
Suzzie x

1 Like

Suzzie @thistledownandHOPE I tried changing after the folksy hour on twitter to see what would happen. The week I changes to free UK shipping I had 4 times the views I had before and a sale,and I have had a sale a week since which doesn’t seem much but I had only had one sale on folksy since returning 6 months ago. my views are on average double what they were before the change, I have altered some of my prices so I am not really losing much by offering the service. I think it would be difficult to offer free international shipping with the small items I sell but free UK shipping so far is working ok. I have since applied the same to my etsy shops and they have also seen a small rise in sales and views especiallly from within the UK.


Interesting Kez @kezylou so it has made quite a difference for you.
Thank you for sharing
Suzzie x