More and more e-commerce businesses like yours are looking for ways to expand internationally. That’s not surprising. Worldwide B2C e-commerce sales are targeted to hit $2.4 trillion by 2018, and many of those international buyers are looking for just what you’re selling.
If you’ve done your research, you know that there are countless things to consider before selling to international consumers. One of the biggest challenges of selling internationally? Getting the item to the buyer.
The high cost of shipping, the endless and often confusing documentation, risk of loss or damage, and lack of visibility mean that shipping packages internationally can seem like more trouble than it’s worth. But, it doesn’t have to be.
What to Look for in an International Shipping Solution
First, be sure that your solution makes international shipping cost-effective, efficient, and worth the effort of setting up your business to sell globally by providing the following:
1. Low rates: Sounds obvious, but unless you’re selling high-value items, shipping individual packages to international locations can be cost-prohibitive. In order to complete, you need cost savings beyond regular PC Postage discounts.
2. Visibility/tracking: Thirty-one countries make up about 97% of all international purchases from US e-commerce businesses. These international buyers expect to be able to track their purchase from the moment it leaves your warehouse to the time it arrives at their door.
3. Ease-of-use: One of the most difficult parts of international shipping is choosing the correct forms to complete (there are multiple versions of customs forms) and knowing that you filled them out correctly. Choosing the wrong form, or filling it out incorrectly or incompletely, can result in delivery delays and/or extra fees. Your shipping solution should automate the documentation process so you don’t need to worry about choosing the right form or submitting it with missing information.
4. Protection against loss or damage: E-commerce businesses often feel that purchasing insurance is a waste of money. And, typically, parcel insurance only covers the cost of the item, not the cost to ship it to the buyer (which can sometimes be more than the cost of the item itself). You should look for a shipping solution that provides at least a minimal amount of free coverage, but also look for one that covers the shipping costs should the item be lost or damaged.
5. Convenient pick-up scheduling: Carrier pick-up services typically run on their own schedules, rather than yours. And, many charge you for using their pick-up service. Be sure you choose a service that allows you to schedule a pick up during a time that is convenient for you — and one that doesn’t charge you for it.
Check Out GlobalPost
If you are looking for an international e-commerce shipping service that provides all of these benefits and more, you need to check out GlobalPost. In addition to all of the benefits listed above, GlobalPost provides extra services like: dedicated, expert technical support 24/7; $100 in free coverage, plus reimbursement of the shipping costs; automated customs forms and documentation; free end-of-day pick up service for businesses shipping 10 or more packages per day; and little to no disruption to your current shipping processes.
GlobalPost is available through some of the most popular shipping platforms including ADSI, ShipStation, DigitalShipper, and many more.
To learn more about GlobalPost and to see if it can help with your international shipping strategy, go to www.goglobalpost.com or call 888.899.1255.
Amine Khechfé is Chief Strategy Officer, Stamps.com and co-founder, Endicia. Contact him at 650.321.2640 or firstname.lastname@example.org.