Should I offer international shipping?

Should I offer international shipping?

This topic contains 8 replies, has 5 voices, and was last updated by  Heidi H. 4 days, 10 hours ago.

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    I have a small business that creates and sells eco-friendly fashion accessories, and it’s a lot of fun, but also a lot of work.

    I’m mostly doing business online, and most of my customers are located in Canada, but once in awhile someone from another country writes me a message, complaining that they would like to order something from me, but that I don’t offer shipping to their country… I always feel bad when that happens, and I’ve been trying to figure it out, but I feel like international shipping would be way too expensive… I don’t want to lose money, or to ask for super high shipping fees, because I feel that when I want to place an order and it has shipping fees twice as high as the item I want to buy, it’s not worth it, you know!

    Do you have some advice for me?


    I guess if I were you, I would definitely ship orders to these international customers… If the shipping fees are very high, maybe I would cover half of them myself. Sure, I would lose a bit of money, but I would have a new happy customer proud to support my work!


    If only one person was complaining that you don’t offer international shipping, I think it wouldn’t be worth it. But if more and more people are reaching out to you asking why you don’t ship to their country, you should really consider offering international shipping.

    If these people want what you have to offer enough to contact you and ask you why you don’t ship internationally, surely they will be ready to pay high shipping fees. Or at least that’s how I’d feel.


    But is there a more convenient and affordable way to ship internationally? If I just go to my local post office each time someone from Mexico or Europe wants to buy something from me, it will be expensive, won’t it?


    Well that’s an option, but there are others. For example, you could check out a company like 3PL Links, that takes care of international shipping and logistics. They help businesses lower their shipping costs, so maybe that could be a solution for you.


    I’m confused about what third party logistics is exactly… If I only have a few international orders to ship each month, is a service like that really for me? Or is it for bigger businesses who need to ship out many orders each week?


    What a third party logistics partner does is that they can help you get in touch with the right carrier to ship your orders where they need to go, so you don’t have to worry about it and just focus on running your business.

    In your case, you would need a LTL carrier, which means a carrier that handles Less Than Truckload shipping. I guess shipping small orders from many different businesses allows them to do it for an affordable fee, which will be much lower than if you were trying to ship out each of your international orders on your own from your local post office.

    I don’t know all the details of your situation, though, so it would be best for you to contact a third party logistics company to see if their services would be right for you. This way, you could offer international shipping in a cost-effective way.


    Thanks a lot, I understand it all better now. I’ll definitely spend more time researching third party logistics options, because I think it would be for the best to offer international shipping on my website. Just this morning I received another email from someone in Mexico asking if I could ship something to them!


    That’s great! Time to grow your business and give your customers what they want, right?

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