Finding affordable international eCommerce shipping is often a scary thing for younger eCommerce brands or retail businesses. If you’re wondering how to ship internationally, it can be a little overwhelming! The special considerations needed for taxes, regulations, and packaging seem complicated for anyone just starting out.
Well, not when you have a plan!
Sending an order overseas, whether it’s just one or a bunch doesn’t have to be a headache.
In this post, you’ll learn:
- How to set up international shipping for eCommerce or any business
- Regulations and costs for international shipping services
- How to look for affordable international eCommerce shipping
eGlobalusa can help your business expand into different parts of the world. You’ll see how to lower your risk and costs for international shipping, as well as how to simplify your process as much as possible.
Let’s jump in!
Affordable International eCommerce Shipping
Having a great product is the first step in creating a trustworthy and scalable eCommerce brand.
Being able to take your product to every corner of the world is important if you’re out to make your brand a household name. Luckily, there are a lot of services that can help you take your products into over 220+ countries – depending on what you’re selling of course.
Preparation is key
Before you launch into international markets, you need to be sure that what you’re selling is allowed to be sent where you want to go.
Customs and Regulations
Delays and costly fines are some of the things you can look forward to if you’re not familiar with the regulations of the countries you’re sending to.
There are some weird laws out there!
You can check the official customs website for your target country. There are very clear guidelines for what can and cannot be shipped.
Still not sure? eGlobalusa specializes in international eCommerce and can tell you if your products are allowed in the countries you are shipping to.
Is my item restricted or prohibited?
There are two different types of rules that countries have around imports.
Restricted items are goods that meet certain criteria before they clear customs and enter a country.
Prohibited items are goods that CANNOT be imported into a country for any reason.
Many countries prohibit seemingly harmless goods for no particular reason. But, many countries ban the same products for safety; both during transportation and for the buyer.
One example of this? Fireworks!
Is my product dangerous?
Just because your product isn’t prohibited outright, certain parts of it can be labeled dangerous.
Lithium batteries are one such item. Individually, a battery won’t hurt you, but most are made of flammable materials. For this reason, all packages (both domestic and international) are labeled to ensure proper handling.
Fair warning, if you declare your product has a dangerous component such as batteries, it may mean that your product cannot travel by air, or it may come with an extra handling fee.
What are the extra costs for shipping internationally?
Taxes, fees, duties, and tariffs, a bunch of words that mean extra costs!
- Taxes are an added expense, usually based on percentage. There are options for you to pay in advance, or for your customer to pay upon delivery (super common for international shoppers!)
- Fees are flat rates that apply to a shipment, regardless of its value. This can include peak season charges, fuel surcharges, and even an extra charge for situations such as pandemics.
- Duties are similar to taxes but are paid to governments, usually as a percentage of your after-tax value.
- Tariffs are a tax that’s added to foreign products to restrict trade from certain countries or make foreign products less appealing to customers.
If this is your first time shipping internationally or rarely do it, eGlobalusa can help you determine a product’s “landed cost”. This will help you to price your products and set shipping rates accordingly.
Are there any extra costs?
Many countries have tax-free thresholds. This means that a product is free of tax charges if it’s under a certain value. Taxes, fees, duties and tariffs vary depending on where you’re shipping from and where you’re shipping to. The team at eGlobalusa is super knowledgeable and can help you determine all of them!
Packing your delivery safely
Packing your products correctly is one of the most important things you can do to lessen your risk of extra costs or delays. There are many packing supplies available to help.
Boxes are the most common way to send packages, as they are always available, highly customizable, and strong for their weight.
However, padded envelopes and other strong envelopes are becoming more common for retail and international eCommerce due to their slight weight, protection for things such as clothing, and ease.
Here are a few quick tips for packing your items securely for international shipping:
Lots of packing materials can be reused (there are SO MANY options for sustainable packaging now!) but should be trashed before they lose their strength and integrity. If a flap is bent or the box has a hole, it’s not worth using!
- Pick the right size packaging
Some empty space is ok, it protects the products inside from movement. However, if your box is too big for the item it could affect your shipping costs.
You will also need to consider the weight of the product when you pick your packaging. You don’t want an item damaged because the packaging isn’t strong enough to hold it!
- Seal everything correctly
Sealing a box for international shipping well leads to an extra level of security.
- Clearly attach your label
Different couriers will have different label layouts, as well as different requirements. An easy way to ensure your package has no delays is to ensure all labels are visible.
Tips for affordable international eCommerce shipping:
Customers abandon carts due to high shipping costs all the time. As a result, it’s important that once you have chosen your international shipping options, you can then try to lower your costs.
While it might be tempting to lower your costs by choosing a cheaper service, you may be cutting corners in reliability and quality.
- eGlobalusa offers the cost-effective options of postal in its Economy service while providing screening and tracking
- Tracking updates are important for customers and build trust and confidence in your brand with your customers.
- Revisit and revise your shipping options often! Rates and policies change often, so it’s easy to update regularly.
Today is the best day to start sending your products all over the world!
eGlobalusa has the solutions you need to get your international eCommerce process going smoothly.
Director of Marketing & Media
Kristin loves coffee and reading, in that order! She drinks the coffee and makes the things for eGlobalUSA.