Your customers don’t care where you are in the world. If they like your products, they may buy from you. With this in mind, you need to be ready to ship to anywhere in the world.
With DotGO ecommerce websites, organising your shipping tariffs is simple. However, understanding customs regulations, and finding out which shipping companies offer the best value is vital to making sure your international eCommerce is profitable too.
Organising your shipping rules
With a DotGO ecommerce website, you can manage your delivery bands based on where a customer is ordering your product from.
If they are in the UK, for example, you can set a rule to say that shipping is free. If not, you can set a further rule to make shipping £5 for European destinations, or £10 for locations in North America. Indeed you can set individual shipping prices for any of the 195 countries in the world, as well as some territories.
See our support video series on how to set up your delivery bands here.
Read our step-by-step support article here.
Finally, you can set a price for the ‘Rest-of-the-World’, which is a great rule to have at the end to catch any orders from a location you had not anticipated previously. In this way, orders from exotic locations can come under the umbrella of a universal charge, so you are covered in any eventuality.
Getting your shipping rules in the right order
Remember to have rules for specific countries and regions, such as the UK and North America, ahead of Rest-of-the-World shipping rules, so that the more expensive rules do not override your shipping rates to the United Kingdom or Europe, for example.
You can also include weight rules for each item for each country, so that your heavier products do not cost you more to ship than you are paid. By using your shipping rules to match the expected prices of your delivery, you can avoid any situation where you are out of pocket.
How to make shipping less expensive
You can make your eCommerce overseas shipping cheaper in a number of ways. Using lighter, less bulky packaging can negate extra charges for these items, as long as the products themselves are still certain to reach your customers in good condition.
You don’t have to use Royal Mail either. Although these are usually the best option for a new business, there are a number of shipping and postage companies out there, who have special rates depending on the weight, destination, or number of deliveries.
Know your customs regulations
Each country has its own customs regulations. Some countries will impose a tax on any items with a value over a certain amount. Make sure you take these taxes into account in your postage costs when you set them up. You can arrange for your items to be Delivery Duty Paid (DDP), with the Royal Mail, to avoid the item being held up in customs, and your customer being subject to unexpected charges.
Do not try to under-declare the value of your items. If customs suspect you are gaming the system, they can summarily confiscate the item, or may simply delay its delivery beyond what is reasonable.
There may even be regulations restricting sales of goods to certain locations. The UK has sanctions on certain countries, although most restrictions relate to arms and financial services. Likewise the country you are exporting to may have restrictions on the product. Exporting alcohol to Saudi Arabia, for example, will see your goods confiscated immediately, and could even get your customer into trouble with the law.
If you are looking to for a professional ecommerce website design for your business, contact the professionals at DotGO. We've built hundreds of successful online stores selling everything from model trains to cheese. Take a look at our latest ecommerce examples here.
Looking for more small business advice? Look no further.
Why settle for second best?
Get an online shop to be proud of.
Our brilliant team of dedicated designers and content writers work closely with you to determine the precise needs of your online business, keeping you in the loop throughout and producing a stunning ecommerce website that works hard for your business.
Let's make you some money.