Shipping from the UK to Foreign Countries
Global ecommerce is growing phenomenally and new markets are emerging with promising scope.
If you run an ecommerce business in the UK, the time to capture new territories is now. Exciting as it sounds, we also know that it is equally daunting.
One of the pain points for businesses looking to tap cross-border potential markets is international shipping. Selling internationally comes with many challenges such as customs, prohibited and restricted articles list, paperwork, and more.
Read on for more information on how to ship across the globe from the UK, and how ShipBob with its expertise in global shipping will not only be a wise business aide but a boon to your customers.
While we’re based in the US, a quarter of our sales are international. It looks like international sales will overtake US sales in a few short years — so we are definitely using ShipBob’s international fulfilment centres!
COO of The Adventure Challenge
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How to ship from the UK to foreign countries
In an increasingly demanding and convenience-driven world, where same-day and two-day deliveries have become commonplace, customers are unwilling to settle for less.
A Forrester study shows that as many as 44% of ecommerce shoppers ditch their purchases because of shipping and handling costs.
It is therefore important to devise a robust international shipping strategy. For that, it is critical that you consider customer expectation standards about shipping in the country of expansion, and be transparent on the delivery timeline and import duties.
Also, inform yourself about customs as that forms a significant part of international shipping and can often be a major obstacle if not dealt with properly. Keeping customers abreast and updated on the additional fees upfront is always preferred.
Offering DDP (Delivery Duty Paid) shipping service can also help in delivering a simplified customer experience. It places the responsibility of risk and fees of shipping goods on the seller while the goods are in transportation. It protects the buyer from being scammed or paying high taxes and makes the sender responsible until the customer receives the goods.
However, if handled improperly DDP can affect profit margins and become a burden to the seller.
It is a good idea to look for suitable carriers that deliver in the region of expansion and are reliable. Carriers that offer solutions with shipping insurance and have strong tracking mechanisms make for better picks when shipping internationally.
For a business looking to venture into foreign countries, smooth international shipping processes are an important part of the ladder to success.
ShipBob has successfully partnered with many growing businesses, and therefore understands the challenges of expanding into new territories well.
To begin with, we have put together the list below of carriers that ship from the UK to international locations across the globe. You can also find the shipping options from these carriers and their respective calculators here.
International shipping carriers and services
Getting an overview of the shipping costs is important when shipping internationally. Costs vary depending on the package measurements, weight, type, and destination.
Once you have an indication of what the costs are like, you can decide on a carrier for your requirements.
Six of the most reliable and trusted international shipping carriers that ship from the UK are Royal Mail, UPS, FedEx, Evri (The new Hermes), DPD, and Parcelforce Worldwide.
All these carriers deliver across a vast majority of countries and territories over the world.
Before making the decision on which carrier to choose for your requirements make a list of the following:
- The type of product you sell (carriers may have special options for documents and printed materials)
- Weight (some offer better services for lightweight packages like RoyalMail and others may have flat-rate options)
- Country of import (some carriers are better suited for specific regions)
Below is a list of some of the shipping services offered by each of these carriers. Their respective shipping calculators have also been linked here.
|Carrier||Shipping Services Offered||Shipping Calculator|
|Royal Mail||Calculate Rates|
Note: These are general options for consumers shipping orders. To know what ShipBob offers when shipping from UK to other countries, please request a quote here.
Shipping from the UK to North America
Shipping to North America can be expensive for businesses set in the UK. But the US and Canada are two countries in this region most ecommerce businesses would not want to pass upon.
Goods exported from the UK here are subject to import duties. It is recommended to inform customers of the expected taxes or duties in advance.
Partner with ShipBob, a 3PL global expert to become more cost-effective and bring your delivery timelines down. ShipBob has a network of fulfilment centres across the US, Canada, Europe, and Australia. You can pick the fulfilment centre closer to your customers. With inventory in the region, you can deliver faster and at a reduced cost.
“The UK is our home base, and all the customers we ship to are in the UK. We spoke to some classical, British-owned fulfilment companies in our search, but ShipBob turned out to be perfect for us. We had no concerns about ShipBob’s HQ being in the US — if anything, it was more of a positive!
ShipBob has done incredibly well in the US, and their track record reassured us that we can grow together with ShipBob as it ramps up its international operations.”
Adelina Zotta & Connor Westby, Co-Founders of NutriPaw
Shipping from the UK to Europe
Ever since Brexit, the UK is no longer a member state of the EU. This has created trade restrictions between the UK and EU.
Proximity is a definite advantage when looking to expand in Europe as many carriers offer special delivery rates and timelines for services to some parts of Europe from the UK. Additionally, UK goods may be received well in some countries such as Denmark, and Austria owing to similarities in the markets.
As a business in the UK, be sure to exploit these to your advantage.
In case you are looking for some country-specific shipping information here are some guides that can help you avoid hiccups.
|Austria||Shipping to Austria from the UK|
|Bulgaria||Shipping to Bulgaria from the UK|
|Denmark||Shipping to Denmark from the UK|
|Germany||Shipping to Germany from the UK|
Shipping from the UK to Asia
Asia is home to some of the world’s largest ecommerce markets such as Japan, India, South Korea, and more. With the increasing disposable incomes of the Asian population, this region is an interesting choice for a UK-based business looking to expand.
Interestingly, many Asians perceive British-made goods to be of higher quality and are also prepared to pay more.
While the Asian market presents lucrative opportunities, it is also important to decide where would you want to expand. A real understanding of the specific country and the culture, along with the right product and local business partners could help in delivering success.
Shipping from the UK to Africa
Some key factors in the development of the ecommerce market in Africa are, the mobile phone penetrations, innovations in mobile telephony, financial inclusion, etc.
While these factors promise growth, lack of control of cybercrime, defects in the legal framework, and inadequate consumer protection create hurdles in online commerce’s development.
To mitigate the above, build a robust platform with increased payment security measures to ensure enhanced consumer trust in your ecommerce brand.
Africa is a large continent, covering about one-fifth of the world. Shipping to this region can be time-intensive and expensive.
Be sure to check the shipping timelines and costs to choose the most suitable one for your requirements.
Sell from the UK to South & Central America
There are certain categories such as health and sciences, oil and gas, renewable energy, fintech, etc. where demand for UK expertise is sought in South American countries such as Brazil.
Also, Mexico makes for a strategic entry gateway to the Latin and Central American region. The country has a large youthful population and is showing steady growth in exports from the UK. These are all reasons to look at this promising market keenly.
Given the distance, shipping to these regions may require partnering with an international 3PL expert to provide a smoother customer experience. ShipBob with its real-time inventory update, bulk shipping discounts, etc. can help you in taking the stress out of cross-border shipping.
Sell more across the globe with ShipBob
ShipBob is an omnichannel, international 3PL that helps fast-growing brands launch into international markets with ease.
When you ship international orders from the US, you end up paying more in landed costs, which can significantly add up and cut into profit margins.
When you outsource fulfilment to ShipBob, you can take advantage of bulk shipping discounts for both domestic and international shipments. For more information on ShipBob’s international shipping rates, click here.
ShipBob also helps to reduce the burden of cross-border shipping by offering merchants the option to ship a bulk of inventory to an international fulfilment centre location, allowing you to ship international orders closer to their destination.
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Since ShipBob’s entire fulfilment network is powered by a centralised, proprietary technology, so you can split inventory across the globe and track real-time inventory levels, storage and fulfilment costs, average transit days, and more all from a single dashboard.
We’ve started storing inventory in ShipBob’s Melbourne fulfilment centre, and it’s been wonderful! We’ve also begun utilising their UK location as well, and will provide more volume there in the future as we continue our international expansion and complete the Amazon Launchpad Program in Germany.”
Nathan Garrison, Co-Founder and CEO of Sharkbanz
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