When it comes to challenges associated with international business expansion, shipping tops the chart. The increasing global competition for customers has forced businesses to expand their services across the globe. The surge in online buyers accessing services from international vendors resulted in businesses expanding their businesses in different regions. According to the report published by Online Shopper, the highest frequency of online buyers belong to Canada (83%), Brazil (81%), and Mexico (78%).
Besides, in the United States alone, more than half of the online buyers are shopping from international merchants. All this has made it necessary for entrepreneurs to step up their international shipping game to meet their customers’ expectations. Here are some tips that will help e-commerce companies to take advantage of the increasing opportunities of overseas expansion while providing a decent shopping experience to the clientele.
Be Mindful of Your Product’s Demand in International Region
Before stepping into a new market, ask yourself some basic questions:
- Is your product important enough in the target region?
- If ‘Yes,’ what is the taxation value of your product in that country?
- What is the minimum threshold for duty tax?
Perhaps, these questions will help you make the appropriate decision for your business model. In case you’re not sure about it, then it’s best to contact a reliable international shipping company for further guidance. Besides, you can even contact business expansion consultants. They are experienced individuals and can guide you well based on market research.
Use a Parcel Consolidator to Control Your Shipment Costs
According to the IPC survey, a majority of international consumers get their purchases shipped through parcel posts. It is because most of these products do not weigh more than 20 pounds. However, handling one product at a time does not make much sense as it might cost you extra cost for the remaining products. In that case, vendors can use a parcel consolidator to make things easier.
Parcel consolidator is the latest kind of parcel service, which consolidates your parcels in a large container and stamps them for postage to your destination region. Upon the parcel’s arrival at the destination country, it goes through customs in bulk. It ultimately saves taxation and other miscellaneous charges. Also, it makes international shipping convenient, fast, and inexpensive.
Perform International Buying through Automated Shipping Software
Most of the express shipping services charge heavily for re-attempts. A slight error in address could cost you considerable fees. To avoid this inconvenience, make sure the recipient’s address is accurate. Also, it is best to add your customer’s working contact details. However, mishaps and typos can still occur when rushing to different tasks simultaneously. There is no better alternative than automated shipping software, as it eliminates all chances of errors by allowing you to ship to pin location.
Also, the digital print labels provide you real-time tracking of your shipment, eliminating the chances of delivering parcels at the wrong location. The centralized dashboard in automated shipping software also gives you customizable shipping options to deliver your shipment orders to a different location.
Always Check the Rating and Compare Prices
Today, hundreds of shipping agencies worldwide cater to the different needs of their customers with their specialization. However, not every shipping agency needs to provide excellent services in all departments. For shipping agencies, it is extremely hard to maintain the quality in all segments due to tons of regular shipments. Therefore, you must cross-check the rating of the shipping agency that you intend to choose. Besides, to deliver cost-effective services, it is essential to compare the prices at the initial stage of the delivery process.
Follow Proper-Documentation and Invoices
In this fast-paced environment, electronic documentation and paperless invoices prove to be very handy. For international shipping, authorities usually require several printed copies of invoices and a few necessary documents of the retailer. However, by signing up for an online shipping solution, you save your precious time and get rid of the hassle of document printing.
Verify Whether the Shipment is DDP or DDU to Calculate Accurate Cost
Several shipping agencies do not disclose whether the package follows paid or unpaid duty delivery until the last moment. Although it seems of a little value, it can create a real headache for you during the final stage of the product’s delivery. In many cases, companies tend to include taxes and other fees in the overall shipment costs. To avoid such unpleasant surprises, make sure your shipping agency provides you duty-paid services with custom clearance insurance, both local and international.
Do Not Under-declare the Value of Your Shipment
International shipment is a serious job. While sending costly items, many people tend to hesitate to quote the actual amount, which is not a smart idea. International customs keenly inspect every item entering their borders. If they are suspicious of something being of more value than stated, they can confiscate or delay its delivery. You can never outsmart the trained authorities through false declarations.
Also, in case your shipping agency loses your item, you would not be able to redeem its actual value even in a lawsuit if you have under-declared its value on paper. So, it is wise to choose a reliable and internationally recognized agency, rather than losing your valuable items due to small negligence.
Expanding business by moving it overseas has become more manageable now than ever. Unlike the past times when business owners would have to find a reliable counterpart to look over the operations in a foreign land, they easily manage the companies themselves, thanks to technological advancement. Undoubtedly, e-commerce has changed the game for entrepreneurs.
However, it comes with its fair share of challenges. Despite the complexities and hurdles of overseas business expansion, organizations do not stop from expanding internationally. According to Statistica, e-commerce sales went up a staggering 250%, which speaks volumes. In the corporate world, competition for the customer’s attention is increasing more than ever. Thus, companies are taking extra measures to increase their visibility to a more significant audience.