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It doesn't matter whether you run a small online business or a dropshipping site; every business will confront the same issue at some point: What else can you do to keep the business growing?
International shipping is the solution for many businesses.
Exporting your goods to international customers may be a highly lucrative method to grow and diversify your business. Even though 70 percent of the world's buying power is situated outside the United States, many e-commerce firms have yet to go into cross-border trading.
It's natural to be nervous when it comes to overseas shipping, especially when it comes to worries about prices and customs. However, international shipping alternatives have improved dramatically in recent years, and now, selling to foreign customers is much simpler.
This article will teach you the basics of international shipping for eCommerce shop owners, particularly dropshippers.
We'll go through everything.
- The fundamentals of international shipping
- The international shipping companies
- The most cost-effective method of international shipping
So, let's get started.
Everything You Need To Know About International Shipping
Let me explain to you the fundamentals of international shipping in 3 easy steps.
1 Understanding Product & Packaging
Confirm the product's ability to be shipped.
You're aware of the packaging limitations that apply to your domestic shipments, right? However, when it comes to shipping items abroad, weight and size restrictions vary widely depending on the destination. If you're shipping to another country through USPS, for example, the maximum package weight allowed ranges from 4 to 70 pounds, depending on the destination.
There are also a few product categories that airlines would just refuse to ship internationally under any circumstances. You can't mail nail polish to another nation by USPS, for example. Same way, FedEx will not transport expensive jewelry internationally.
Furthermore, each nation has its own set of limitations. Did you know that playing cards cannot be sent to Denmark, Greece, or Spain? Or that you can't send bells or spectacles to Italy or Uruguay?
Prepare packages on their way.
Every box, envelope, and mailer tube you send will make several stops on its route to its ultimate destination. Most of your domestic orders will spend their time in sorting facilities and vehicles. On the other hand, your overseas orders will have the pleasure of going by aircraft and boat. This means you'll have to be extra meticulous while packing cross-border goods.
Calculate the weight, value, and fragility of each package's contents. When transporting liquids or powders internationally, keep in mind that specific packing is required. Make sure your shipment arrives in one piece before it embarks on a lengthy trip.
2 Understanding Charges for International Shipping
When determining how much to charge for international shipping, there are many variables to consider. Among the most important are:
Be sure to include packaging into your total product cost. This should cost between $1.50 and $6.00 for each item, depending on the quality and size. The price may vary depending on how many boxes you'll need to suit various order sizes. Bubble wrap and filling are two packaging materials that may impact your packaging and product prices.
What is your country's minimum hourly wage? You may wish to include a "handling fee" in your product price. Calculate your handling fee by measuring how long it takes you (on average) to prepare an order for shipping and comparing it to the minimum salary.
For example, if preparing an item for international shipment takes 15 minutes, and your hourly pay is $12, you might add a $3 handling fee to compensate for your time. There should be no issues here since overseas consumers are generally ready to pay extra for secure, high-quality delivery (how shipments are packed and handled is a significant part of quality shipments).
Duties & Taxes
Duty calculators may be used to calculate taxes and tariffs for your target nations, which you can subsequently include into your product price. Alternatively, you may delegate the payment of taxes and duties to your consumers. This is known as Delivered At Place (DAP), and it entails the consumer paying a fee before receiving their purchase.
It's preferable to pay the costs yourself and ship goods as Delivered Duty Paid (DDP) if you want to provide a surprise-free shopping experience. Customers should be asked to pay these costs in advance in this situation.
My suggestion is to include most of the fixed costs with product price. Most customers don't understand the technical terms. Regardless of your strategy, be upfront with your customers about any extra charges that may apply. Here is more information about pricing strategies.
3. Understanding Shipping Companies
There are four major carriers for US retailers/dropshippers: USPS, UPS, FedEx, and DHL. Each carrier has its own set of benefits:
- USPS – Usually the cheapest choice for international eCommerce delivery.
- UPS – With offices in almost every nation, UPS can handle shipping from start to finish, from your warehouse through delivery.
- FedEx – Focuses on expedited delivery alternatives, including next-day and 2-3-day delivery.
- DHL — International customs experts
Determine two things when you examine your options: 1) which elements you're prepared to compromise on, and 2) what is non-negotiable. You can more readily select the appropriate carrier once you know how flexible you are on factors like prices and delivery speed.
If you need expedited international delivery, UPS, DHL, and FedEx are all viable options. Because each carrier has its own reputation in the destination country, it's frequently advisable to check with your recipient country to see whether a specific courier offers superior service.
If you want a cost-effective solution, unfortunately, there is no definite answer. You have to play around with the rate calculators below to calculate international shipping costs and find the cheapest method to ship internationally. Use various order weights, destination countries, and more to find the most affordable carrier to ship internationally.
International Shipping Rates of USPS
USPS Overseas Shipping Rates: You may use the USPS International Price Calculator to estimate international shipping rates. International Priority Mail rates are determined by the weight of the package and the country of destination.
International Shipping Rates of UPS
UPS International Shipping Cost Calculator: Enter information about your cargo, such as the destination, origin, shipment date, and weight, to see various international package shipping prices for each service.
International Shipping Rates or FedEx
FedEx International Shipping Cost Calculator: Use this FedEx calculator to get a pricing estimate and determine when your cargo is anticipated to arrive.
International Shipping Rates of DHL
Export Services – Overseas Express Delivery: DHL offers various international delivery choices, ranging from emergency same-day shipping to guaranteed time-critical next-day delivery to less urgent day-specific solutions. Some services are not accessible in all countries. Please use the link to get a quote.
Conclusion on How to Ship Internationally
Studying international shipping companies' warehouse locations or researching delivery alternatives in countries like Malaysia/India may seem to be a bother. However, it's essential to keep in mind that you're dealing with a sweet problem. You may sell items from dozens of different suppliers! & The whole PLANET EARTH is your market full of customers.
International shipping is, without a doubt, challenging. There's a lot to keep in mind. However, this more labor is a direct consequence of increased opportunity. Every obstacle you overcome increases the size of your prospective client base.
Still, wondering if you can handle it yourself or not? No problem! Contact us if you have any queries about dropshipping websites or how to dropship with quicker delivery. You may leave your questions in the comments section below or message us on social media. We'll respond as soon as possible. With that out of the way, that's all we've got for you today. We'll be back shortly with something fresh for you. Until then, I'll see you around!
Don't forget, you can get a fully automated USA based dropship website, built for you, in whatever niche you want, in 72 hours or less. Go to https://learn.dropshipusa.io/webclass to register for our free webinar that will teach you our secret dropship model, and how you can get it built for you in only 3 days!