4 Questions Beginners Ask About International Shipping

Now that everything’s available online, it’s easy to see why eCommerce businesses are doing so well. Add the fact that it’s safer to buy items online and have them shipped right in front of your doorstep instead of having to go out and buy them yourselves.

International shipping

Having items shipped at home is safer and more convenient for everyone. But shipping products, especially internationally, can be expensive. That’s why you should explore your shipping options.

Aside from choosing a courier that can significantly lower shipping costs to attract more customers, you also have to consider their reliability and service. Although the time it takes for your items to be shipped to your customers isn’t completely within your control, it will still reflect on your customer ratings. If your items take a long time to get to the buyer, you can expect to receive a review that mentions this. The point is, even if you’re not exactly in charge of the shipping, your whole business model relies on it.

So before you consider catering to a wider range of customers, you must first understand how it works. With that, here are some of the few questions that you might have in mind.

1. Which courier should I choose?

The courier that should ship your items to the buyer should be someone you trust or, at least, has a proven record of success. The last thing that you would want is for your customers to receive a faulty or damaged product that might have been the result of the shipping process.

You should also consider the rates. While shipping rates are mostly shouldered by the buyer, with a bit of research you can offer them the best prices. You can also factor in the shipping rates and add it to your retail value and advertise for free shipping instead. This is just one way you can make your products more attractive than your competitors.

Searching each courier’s pages one by one and checking their quotations for various dimensions and weights of parcels is very time-consuming. However, you can still find the cheapest courier services in Canada through Ship Expert. With it, you don’t have to manually input the parcel size and weight into the courier’s website to check their prices. You can easily see the prices between each courier with the same parcel size. This can help you in making an informed decision on which courier you should use to ship your parcels.

2. What are the things I need to prepare for international shipping?

Most sellers get intimidated when their parcel has to cross borders. It’s completely understandable if you are, too! It happens, especially when it’s your first time shipping items internationally.

Basically, you’ll need two sets of documents: those are three copies of the commercial invoice and one customs form. The customs form will be a part of your parcel’s label and will be posted outside the box. The commercial invoice, on the other hand, is placed on a clear pouch, and it should be signed and pasted outside the box, as well.

FedEx delivery van

3. Can I send anything when shipping internationally?

No. Each courier, whether it be USPS, FedEx, DHL or another courier, has its own regulations as to what items are allowed for international shipping. Before shipping out any parcels, make sure that your goods aren’t listed under the courier’s Shipping Restrictions. Knowing these prior to shipping your items will save you a lot of time and money, so it’s best that you check this out first.

4. How long will the shipment take?

There is no definite answer to this as it will depend on which courier you’re going to choose. Some couriers take longer to ship compared to others. However, the average time for international shipments is 1 to 3 weeks.

If you want your items to be shipped faster, you can choose to expedite it, but it will cost you some money. If you want to compare shipping rates and delivery times, you can compare shipping rates online with a company like Ship Expert.

Summary

If you fully want to maximize the reach of your business, you can do so by catering to a broader audience. But before you take orders from international clients, you have to figure out the logistics of how shipping internationally works. Although it’s pretty much the same with that of local shipping, the major differences would have to be the costs, time, and regulations for items shipped. All of these would be dictated by the shipping service you’re going to choose.

So, before you start, make sure that you’ve chosen the right courier to work with.

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