International shipping is the pinnacle of e-commerce. Vendors have access to markets that are more or less the size of planet Earth.
With that in mind, how can you ship your products from point A to B safely?
Shipping products safely is supreme for drop shippers. After all, the absolute beauty of dropshipping is that you can sell items from suppliers worldwide. While shipping an article might seem daunting, the process is much like sending a parcel domestically. Of course, there are a few differences in the delivery options and paperwork. Still, the overall shipping process is the same.
To ship your products globally, righteously, you will require a strategy that works well for you and your business. There’s no need to dig through holes and delve deep into the world of shipping. Still, you do need to understand the available options and pick an approach that will repeatedly be profitable and safe for you.
And just to put a spring in your step, we’ve come up with a few sure-fire ways to help you ensure that your products are safely delivered overseas.
1) Choose Products Sensibly
Not everything that a retailer sells is a good candidate for global shipping. For instance, a ranch retailer and a multi-channel farm based in the Northwest recently received a request from Palestine. A horse trainer there specializing in western roping and riding wanted to order several boxes of horse feeders. The retailer delivers these products within the United States for about $150.00 each, but sending the steel and plastic corner feeders to Palestine would have been more than $1,600.00.
So the message here is simple: try to focus on relatively light, small, and easy-to-ship products.
2) Use Smart Packaging
You want your shipment to arrive intact. Right? And one of the most affordable and accessible ways to do this is by using the proper packaging. Shipping equipment gets designed to protect the products you are shipping. Still, they can only do that when you make use of the suitable packaging material. Use poly-mailers or fresh boxes that are adequate for the items getting shipped, and make sure there is enough area for padding.
Whether you use foam rolls, air pillows, bubble wrap, peanuts, or a combination of all, do not hold back. Cushioning translates to affordable insurance that will ensure your products arrive safely at their locations.
3) Measure & Weigh the Package
Weight and size restrictions apply when delivering items overseas, and every country has specific limits. Contact your shipping provider in advance, so you know the policies for your destination.
Furthermore, if you want to skip measuring and weighing entirely, send your products in rare flat containers available from some carriers.
Using numerous carriers is one good way to minimize your shipping costs and ensure safety.
Postal carriers are often more reasonable but may provide a boatload of options for package speeds and types. Express carriers tend to be quicker, provide more service options, and accommodate larger or heavier packages, but they can be costly. Therefore, do your research and price out regional, postal, and express carrier choices.
5) Use Fulfilment Services
Another valuable way to ensure the safety and successful delivery of your products internationally is by hiring a fulfillment service. Many fulfillment services are available, such as by Shipwire, Amazon, or others, to manage international shipments.
In some instances, the retailer will pay a flat price per order. The service will manage packing, labeling, and monitoring all of those annoying regulations and rules.
6) Know what is Legal to Ship Internationally
One of the significant reasons international shipping isn’t similar to domestic shipping is the massive load of country-specific shipping requirements. Regularly shipped and sold in the United States may be prohibited from importation in particular countries. There are some of the items that cannot be shipped overseas or without documentation. It includes fresh vegetables, fruits, nail polish, medical devices, jewelry, cigarettes, and cell phones.
Furthermore, do not fear. The UPS, FedEx, and USPS have created helpful, thorough guides that list what cannot and can be shipped globally.
7) Create Easy-to-complete Custom Forms
Yes, international shipping necessitates the completion of a few additional applications not required for domestic shipping. When you’ve finished with the Custom Forms, make a complete list of all the important aspects of your cargo.
There is typically a limited amount of room, so ensure to be precise, but do not be wordy. Also, keep in mind that if you’ve been clever in capturing information about your products in advance, these forms will be easy to complete.
- Do you multi-source the products?
- Do you know the country of origin of your products?
- Did you enlist the HTS (Harmonized Terrify System) codes?
If all of this sounds bewildering, you can simplify the process by utilizing some high-end e-commerce shipping software or tool. Then hit print, and the customs forms will be automatically updated.
8) Work with Reliable Suppliers
There are a few practical ways to gauge the consistency of potential suppliers. The best method is to order samples for yourself to put yourself in your buyers’ shoes and notice what global shipping looks like from their perspective.
It is an excellent way to scope out the product’s packaging method, access the delivery time, and even contact the supplier for queries.
9) Address Everything Accurately
A correct and thorough address will help your shipment to arrive safe and on time. Some carriers demand that you use a precise shipping address if you want to claim their money-back guarantee. Therefore, ensure you offer a complete recipient and sender address, inkling zip codes, and phone numbers. After the shipping address, it should include the full country name.
By now, it’s plain to see that the first step to ensuring safe and successful global shipping is to have a strategy in place. By incorporating these tips into your shipping regime, your business can experience positive feedback and more opportunities to grow. Just remember to try out new techniques and approaches since shipping is a seasonal and fluid industry. Also, be sure to refine and re-apply your strategy as changes or new offers take place.