North America Ecommerce Fulfilment Services
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The US and Canada are two lucrative markets that few ecommerce businesses can afford to pass up on. But shipping to customers in North America will be pricey if your business is based elsewhere, and the further away your home country is, the more expensive shipping will be.
Customers might be willing to eat the added cost of international shipping and wait out the long delivery times, but what if you could reach these same customers without having to ship out of country?
Your customers could pay domestic rather than international shipping rates and get their packages much faster, which translates into more orders and higher average order value. This is the benefit of partnering with an international 3PL.
ShipBob is a global 3PL that operates a network of fulfilment centres across the US, Canada, Europe, and Australia. This allows you to pick and choose the fulfilment centres that you want to ship from based on where your customers are located. With your inventory stored closer to your customers, your packages can be delivered even faster and at a lower cost.
Hear how ShipBob’s North American fulfilment helps businesses
Canadian company Bathorium wanted to speed up deliveries and keep shipping costs down. With ShipBob, they can comfortably assign a shipping cost to each order by pinpointing the product weight and destination postcode.
In comparison to shipping products to the US from Canada, which can be extremely variable in cost, retail fulfilment by ShipBob is much easier to estimate because they know the true fulfilment cost.
“We used to spend anywhere from $18 to $25 for a one-pound shipment, and it would take a minimum of 7-10 business days to reach the destination. With ShipBob, we’ve seen a reduction of 70% on shipping costs in the US, which helps keep conversions high.”
Greg MacDonald, CEO & Founder of Bathorium
Autralian-based Baja Bae needed help with shipping orders to their North American customers. They are able to sync their Shopify store and track the entire ecommerce fulfilment process through the ShipBob dashboard, simplifying inventory management and creating a seamless customer experience from start to finish.
“ShipBob offered us the best solution and was tailored toward our needs as an early startup business on its way to growing. We can ship to customers all over the world.”
Tamarin Oblowitz, Co-founder of Baja Bae
As BAKblade expanded their online presence into Canada, both directly and selling through Walmart, they knew they needed a trusted fulfilment partner with a physical presence in Canada.
“We have seen that Canadian customers order more when they know the order ships from within Canada and they do not need to worry about additional taxes if the order comes from the US. From our history through the years with ShipBob, it was a no-brainer to expand into other markets with them knowing that they have done their due diligence to meet the ShipBob standard.”
Marc Fontanetta, Director of Operations at BAKblade
What’s stopping your non-US based businesses from shipping to North America?
When it comes to North American fulfilment, there are a few factors that cause international ecommerce companies to hesitate. Margins are lower, returns are more complicated, and you have to deal with import duties and customs (unless you distribute via an international 3PL with North American fulfilment centres like ShipBob).
Shipping across the globe is much more expensive than domestic shipping, and that means your margins will be tighter than ever. In some cases, international shipping can cost 50% or more of AOV.
With higher shipping costs and lower margins, your business earns less revenue and customers are less likely to buy. By outsourcing to a 3PL like ShipBob with locations in the US and Canada, you don’t have to ship each package internationally, and your margins are much better.
Customers today expect free shipping and a fast turnaround. The last thing you want to see is a spike in cart abandonment due to high shipping costs and long delivery times. With ShipBob, you can leverage their network of fulfilment centres to store inventory near your end customers to get orders delivered faster.
Import duties and customs
It’s not just the added cost that comes from customs and import duties, there’s also the added complexity of having to calculate these duties on a country-by-country basis for each package. But if you outsource to a North American fulfilment company, you can ship your inventory to a US fulfilment centre, and more easily provide duties on each individual package to prevent orders from getting held up at customs.
How ShipBob can help you break into North American markets
ShipBob has an extensive distribution network combined with intuitive technology, which allows you to offer the most competitive rates and the fastest shipping times without breaking the bank.
Use multiple fulfilment centres
Both United States and Canada come with a lot of buying power in the direct-to-consumer space. They are also very large in terms of geography, which means that even if you ship from an East Coast fulfilment centre, you’ll still have to pay premium shipping rates for packages going to the West Coast due to the number of shipping zones a package would have to travel through.
That’s not the case if you take advantage of ShipBob’s multiple fulfilment centres. With ShipBob, you can use historical order data to identify where most of customers are located to make better decisions on where you should store your inventory.
We take a data-driven approach to help you decide where and help you expand into additional fulfilment centre locations as your business grows.
Take advantage of bulk shipping discounts
ShipBob partners with major mail couriers, which gives us access to bulk shipping discounts that you won’t find elsewhere. This is savings that you can pass along to yours customers.
Offer affordable 2-day shipping
What if customers want their products fast. If you are shipping from out of country, then they’re out of luck. But with ShipBob’s distributed inventory mode, you have the opportunity to offer 2-day shipping to more customers at an affordable rate.
How it works
Start by syncing your online store with ShipBob’s platform, then ship your inventory to a ShipBob fulfilment centre (or multiple fulfilment centres). Once we have your inventory, orders placed at your online store are automatically sent to a fulfilment centre, and our fulfilment experts prepare and ship the order.
ShipBob is not your average fulfilment provider. Here are some other features we offer:
Proprietary hosted software
ShipBob is integrated with top solutions in ecommerce, including the biggest ecommerce platforms (Shopify, BigCommerce, Amazon, eBay, etc.). Our software automatically finds the fastest and most affordable shipping routes, and also comes with a built-in inventory and order management software, so you get comprehensive oversight of your business.
Responsive customer support
ShipBob ensures the fulfilment process is agile and responsive, with onsite support reps at our fulfilment centres and dedicated account managers for enterprise customers. We’re here to be your partner with you and watch your business grow.
Vast partner network
ShipBob partners with all sorts of companies in the ecommerce world. Whether you need custom packaging, shipping platforms, marketing agencies and services, or anything else, ShipBob has the right recommendations for you.
Once your store is synced with ShipBob’s platform, all of your data is congregated in one place. This allows ShipBob to produce detailed distribution metrics and reports that shed insight on supply chain optimisations, inventory, and order volume.
Is it time to outsource North American fulfilment to a 3PL?
Whether or not you should open your business up to the North America market depends on the potential business you’re missing out on versus the cost and difficulty of fulfiling internationally.
If you’re considering self-fulfiling international orders, then you have to factor in the added complexity of dealing with customs, import duties, longer shipping times, and higher costs.
Outsourcing to a North American fulfilment company removes much of this complexity. To decide whether or not it makes sense for your business, take a look at traffic to your store and see where traffic is coming from geographically. If a significant amount of traffic is coming from North America, it might be worth storing inventory in one of our fulfilment centres in the US.
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We ship all over the world
We use our network of fulfillment centers to help you strategically split and manage your inventory to reduce shipping costs and transit times.