International Shipping: 5 Rules to Improve Your Business Globally

Photo by Chris Pagan on Unsplash
2 years ago

The rapid growth in shipping goods internationally and meeting customers’ expectations for predictable international transactions sometimes challenges business owners. According to surveys, many international buyers still expect that they receive free shipping internationally despite its expensiveness and unpredictable cross-border issues.

It is then difficult for business owners to meet high expectations and still stay profitable despite the international shipments challenges.

Below are five rules and tips that can help your business take advantage of the growing opportunities of selling internationally while improving your business, remaining profitable, and creating a good shipping experience for your customers. Let’s begin.

Know the demand for your product internationally and how it is regulated in your target country

It would be best if you decided how to fulfill your customer orders by answering several basic questions. What is your product demand? What customs regulations would impact your product? Is your product taxable, and what is the quantity or value? What is the minimum threshold value for duties in the country?

What are the methods of quickly locating the minimum threshold duty value for your product so you can make the best decision for your business? These are some of the questions that you should have answers to.

Ensure that you make use of your parcel carrier knowledge. They usually have a customs broker available to help you figure out the duties that apply to your products in different countries. They also help with custom problems while suggesting the most efficient shipping methods for your business.

Package your goods smartly

If you want your products to arrive intact, an easy and affordable method is to use an appropriate packaging method. Shipping supplies are usually designed to protect the items that you are shipping. However, they can only do this when you use tight materials for your products.

It would be best if you used poly-mailers or new boxes appropriate for what you are shipping. There are proficient and certified international moving companies that provide high quality international shipping boxes that have adequate foam or air bubble cushioning, as well as ample space to store all kinds of household or office items that are deemed fragile and branded, ‘handle with care’.

If you use bubble wraps, air pillows, foam rolls, or a combination of all of them, you should not skimp on the material used. Cushioning is inexpensive insurance that would ensure your products arrive safely.

Know what is legal to ship

A major distinction between international shipping from domestic shipping is that there are usually country-specific shipping requirements. Therefore, items used, sold, and shipped in the U.S might be prohibited from being imported into your select country.

Fresh fruits, nail polish, cigarettes, cell phones, vegetables, and jewelry are some of the regulated goods that either require additional shipping documentation or are regulated goods when going into some countries.

You should not fear these dos and don’t. FedEx, UPS, and USPS already have guides to help you with what can and cannot be shipped internationally.

Ensure that custom forms are completed

Unlike domestic, international shipping requires some additional forms that you would need to fill. When you complete the customs forms, your contents should be listed completely.

Though there is usually a small amount of space, you should not be wordy. Of course, if you have smart-captured your goods in advance, this would be a walk in the park for you.

You should know the country of origin for your goods. Is the goods multi-sourced? Did you capture the harmonized tariff system? If all these sound confusing, you should simplify the process by using eCommerce shipping software.

All you would then need to do is to press the print button. Then the custom forms would be generated automatically for you.

Measure and weigh your package

Weight and size restrictions usually apply when shopping items internationally. These restrictions usually vary based on the country.

Get in contact with your shipping carrier in advance, then find out about the restrictions for your destinations. You can skip measuring and weighing directly by sending your goods flat rate boxes available from the same carrier.

Ensure your goods are properly addressed

A correct and complete address would enable your shipment to arrive on time. In addition, most carriers require that you use an accurate address if you want to claim their money-back guarantee.

Therefore, ensure that you fill in a complete recipient and sender address, including zip codes and phone numbers. Additionally, the country’s full name should also be listed in the last line of the address.

That’s a Wrap

It isn’t hard to sell and ship your business goods internationally. However, it requires some upfront homework. After you have learned the basics and put them into practice, your business will grow and expand your global footprint.

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