The evolution of internet shopping is causing retailers to reconsider the way they manage their supply chains altogether.
When e-commerce first came about, retailers would carry inventory for each product listed on their website. However, now many retailers never physically touch the products they sell online. Instead, giving online orders to a third party for fulfilment.
Want to offer global logistics? There is no harm in providing an overseas service, as long as you know what to expect…
Points to consider:
Where will you ship to?
Did you know, every state in the US has a different tax law? Small blips like this could cause a lot of conflicts if you haven’t properly conducted your research. With Brexit and the EU making drastic changes, you need to be sure you’re up to date on what shipping is beneficial to you.
Before you dive straight in, you should test the waters first. It doesn’t matter what size your business is. You don’t want to put your soul and budget into a service that isn’t needed. A huge bakery business with perishable goods is unlikely to offer global logistics, sending their product all the way across the world, it just isn’t worth their time, cost and energy.
Ask yourself: what works well for my business? If being regional works, then so be it. There are many reasons as to why people chose to be either global or local. Global logistics is not always the answer!
Time Vs Cost.
It’s all well and good offering global shipping but how much is it going to cost you? Not only in the money sense but in time and developing your website to offer these options. It is common for e-commerce business to find global suppliers that have warehouses across the world that stock their products. This can, depending on the scale of your operation, help reduce time and costs for your business.
Having pop-ups on the website with delivery information when a consumer changes the currency option can help prevent unexpected delivery charges. Sites like Boohoo and ASOS give the option to change your country preference as soon as you arrive on the website. Your returns process needs to cater to everyone and be clear. A crisp, clear and well-presented refund policy provides customers with a sense of security and the assurance that their purchase will be as advertised, as we’ve said in our previous blog ‘Importance of having a clear refund policy‘.
Retailers are now expected to be able to sell products in-store, over the phone, online, via smartphone or a tablet device. It’s no longer unreasonable for someone from the U.S to want a UK product. They must be able to deliver products to the customer’s home, office or nearby store. If you can’t keep up with the demands, you’ll quickly fall behind.
Consumers will also expect online shopping to be simple. Products should be easy to find. Present shipping costs, taxes, and duties Delivery-date estimates should be as accurate as possible. The process for returns should be clear and easy to comprehend.
The test in international delivery is finding and managing the best options for each location. Or at all.
Postal overseers create rules in each country that order how shipments must be addressed and prepared. Each country has import and export laws.
There are specific requirements within the various countries when it comes to what they can and cannot ship. For example, Italy prohibits playing cards, bells and clocks, and China has banned walkie-talkies, bicycles, cameras, wristwatches, and sewing machines.
E-commerce is changing the shape of retailing worldwide, and retailers must move swiftly to stake their claims in this fast growing marketplace. These solutions help to lower costs and create online shopping experiences that encourage international consumers to shop with your brand time and time again.
Does global logistics fit seem like the next step for your business? If it is an avenue to consider, use the points above as your guideline to success.
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