Minimum order the “lengthy explanation” – Marble Tile
January 23, 2011 2 Comments
Hello and Welcome, you have most likely found this page through a link. That link was a redirect from an email where you are interested in buying a quantity of marble subway tile or field tile that is less than the minimum order amount. As you read this please note we would love to sell you our marble and it is not that we cannot ship small orders but certain product have shipping issues that make it just too risky.
90% of visitors to this section are here because they want less than 85SF of 3×6” or 100SF of 12×24″. They need it for a kitchen backsplash. So we will focus on that.
In this example you need 50SF of 3×6” Carrara Venato/Bianco Subway Tile. You have either emailed us an enquiry or your order did not go through when you tried to place an order for your 40SF. The issues:
#1 Shipping: Why can you just not ship the 50SF? How do we ship it to you? I apologize for answering a question with a question. Ground or Freight are the options. Lets explore ground shipping. We can ship 50SF of mosaics easily ground, it is also cost effective to do so. It costs anywhere from $1.20SF to $2.50SF to ship each mosaic sheet. Mosaics are pieces of stone attached to a mesh, the mesh is not only flexible but most importantly the tiles are stuck to it and cannot bash together, if they cannot bash together then breakage is considerably less.
The 3×6” tiles are loose tiles, loose in the box. While there will be packaging in the box (UPS will throw the boxes, they are not gentle) the tiles will hit against each other, leading to chips and breakage.
If we ship ground, you would open your box and be “shocked” about the damage and rightly so – we have lots of examples of field tiles shipped UPS ground and other ground companies (it is amazing how many small pieces that a tile can create). UPS would not allow a claim (we have been through this before) as it is considered an item that should not ship ground (as they have discussed this with us already) and if it did “damage is to be expected”. We would have to respond to you and ship more tile “ground” which would be damaged. Round and round we go. You get the point.
The other option would be to ship Freight. Shipping freight allows the product to be secured to a pallet. Breakage is very unlikely. However freight has a minimum cost. For example, 50SF of 3×6” shipped to Dallas, TX would cost a minimum of $265.00. Who would pay $265.00 to have 50SF of 3×6” shipped to them? That is over $5.00SF in shipping cost. Even if they did want to pay, there is no weight – not enough anyway. That will mean a risk of the pallet sliding around. But not just the risk of sliding, drivers will stack it, they will tip it on it’s side and stick it between two crates (drivers will do what they can to get as much freight as they can on their truck). It needs to be heavy enough so it cannot be moved by hand.
You see the problem, neither ground nor freight provides a good solution. The only real solution I can think of is to buy smaller tile orders locally, then you pick it up and also you can see it before you take it home.
To avoid these incredibly lengthy explanations, we simply say “minimum order required”.