It doesn’t matter how big your country is; there will always be more potential customers in it. That is why companies constantly look beyond their borders, in order to continue growing and reaching more public. But shipping internationally isn’t always easy. Whether you are a company with an entire supply chain or an individual who needs to make a timely shipment, there are a series of tips that will make your life easier.
Tricks to improve your international shipments
The most common feeling when dealing with international shipments is that of being lost. Prices, legislation, taxes… Many open fronts without knowing where to start.
A company may have hit a gold mine for its industry or e-commerce may be excited to receive purchase requests from regions it has never sold to before. Even while the enthusiasm is understandable in these situations, it is important to wait before acting.
One misstep can be very costly, as it can jeopardise our company’s reputation. If we decide to make the leap abroad, we have to study previously what conditions we are going to do it under and if it is really going to be beneficial for us.
2. Don’t do it all at once
The further we ship, the more money it costs us to do so. For this reason, one of the usual battles is to decide to do it through slower means, such as the boat -to save costs-, or by plane, to make it as fast as possible.
A little trick that sometimes does not fall is to send a small part of the total by plane and the rest by sea. Thus, our recipient can start working with that first batch of material while waiting for the arrival of the rest.
3. Check the fine print
In the world, there are as many laws as there are countries, and making international shipments can force you to take an accelerated course in the matter. Everyone is aware that certain things, such as food, animals, and weapons, will be subject to more regulation than others.
However, if you put your trust in your own judgement and neglect to thoroughly research the laws that apply to your products, you will make a mistake. For example, in Vietnam, it is prohibited to import calendars if we do so with the intention of commercialising them. Be careful not to learn the peculiarities of the country you are visiting through disgust.
4. You shouldn’t do something just because you can do it.
In itself, managing to send something to almost anywhere in the world is relatively easy today. But not all things are capable of being sent. Or, at least, it is not so profitable to do so.
Something easy to pack, small and light (for example, technological items) is much more comfortable to manage than heavier and bulkier objects, hence the success of e-commerce and the typology of many of its products. But, depending on the case, the cost of transportation can be so high that shipping can hardly be justified.
Keeping this in mind can help you control your emotions and avoid being overly excited when your firm receives a sizable order from a foreign country.
5. Going international does not mean going to any country
Taking the leap abroad is not the same as having to do it for everyone. We will be doing ourselves a disservice if we give in to the urge to increase the number of nations we visit without being adequately prepared.
This becomes even more important if it is the first time that you are going to make international shipments. Don’t try to cover more than you can; In the long term, you will appreciate going at a slower pace but playing it safe.
Investigate which are the optimal countries to start, taking into account the legal ease, the demand for your sector, the knowledge of your brand, etc.
6. Specify who is going to pay for what
According to MyXBorder in international shipments, the payment of taxes is a common source of disputes. Be sure to clarify who will be responsible for taxes, duties, and other payments that may arise during the shipment of the merchandise.
The most common thing is that it is the client himself, but informing him in advance of these issues will not only avoid problems but will also improve the image that your buyer has of you.
7. Avoid delays, do your homework
International transportation may be slow, especially if we use the ship. Therefore, you have twice as many reasons to do your part so that your international shipments do not suffer unnecessary delays. And issues as basic as incorrect documentation or the lack of complete information about the recipient can cause delays that often extend.
As there are, as a general rule, more people in between when it comes to managing incidents, a simple mistake in the delivery address or the lack of a contact person can mean a longer delay than in domestic shipments.
8. Prepare your merchandise for the trip
In international shipments, the merchandise suffers more. More kilometres of road, sea or air. More transshipments, loading and unloading. But that is not an excuse for your client not to receive the merchandise in perfect condition. Good packaging and the meticulous preparation of the merchandise (whether on pallets, containers, etc.) will be the best start for the story to have a happy ending.
9. Be safe
If, as we have said, the merchandise suffers more in international shipments, it is also more likely to suffer breakage. Take the necessary time to study and analyse the different types of insurance available to you: the ones you need and/or the ones you want to make available to your own clients. Like the legislation, the coverage can vary from one country to another, and it is an aspect that you must have controlled.
10. Let yourself help
When preparing, research all the resources at your disposal. Not only can you collect legal, technical, and legal information, but you can also go to official organisations that, in addition to offering advice, can offer you financing to internationalise.
Thousands of companies ship their merchandise throughout the world. Thus, if you take the necessary precautions, yours can absolutely be one of them.