How can it cost (just) that much for delivery? Posted on 23 Aug 17:27
Delivery costs something. Let's take a look.
The three lowest-cost options are:
1) Call a friend with a truck or SUV.
2) Securely strap the items to the roof of a vehicle with a rack on top. (We provide 300-pound load-bearing ratchet straps at $3 cost pass-through.)
3) Donate acceptable furniture to offset delivery costs.
What do other places charge?
Other furniture stores roll-in the delivery cost. What does that mean?
Some stores let their profit margin absorb some or most of the delivery cost.
Typical big-box retailers mark up their furniture 2.8x over cost. That means when an item costs them $100 from the factory, they multiply that cost by 2.8 to arrive at a retail tag reflecting $280.
There is plenty of room to absorb some of the delivery cost inside that hefty margin, right?
All large furniture dealers in this region outsource delivery to a 3rd party company. In other words, even though the trucks might display the furniture brand name on the side, look on the door of the truck to see who the real delivery company is. Delivery gets subbed out to independent contractors. This reduces risk to the furniture headquarters. There are other compelling reasons furniture stores outsource their delivery service, but that's for another day.
Some stores find it convenient to just flat-price delivery for everyone. That seems unjust to the person who lives close by, and too good to be true for the person an hour away.
Commonly, delivery crews have a white-glove policy where they are not allowed to remove the items the customer wants gone. Only one major furniture retailer has a removal cost program at $45 per piece of furniture you have them remove. Nice, right?
What are the real delivery costs?
Consider the time invested:
____ Scheduling / communication time
____ Load up time
____ Drive time
____ Delivery / installation
____ Possible haul-away time
____ Return trip
For two guys
Consider the costs:
$____ Two strong, smart workers
$____ Truck lease
$____ Insurance (both on the truck and the property)
$____ Maintenance by mileage
$____ Reduced productivity while the labor is gone from the store (This one is really hard to measure but definitely a consideration.)