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Getting goods to your customers is every business’ priority, but it’s also one of the hardest elements to get right. Shipping and logistics are complicated enough when you have the home advantage, never mind what happens when you suddenly need to ship internationally.
Knowing your shipping options, how to navigate that pesky red tape that’s known as customs, and how to do it all for less can make or break any business. If you’re new to the world of international trade, don’t worry, this guide is here to help.
How to Choose the Best Shipping Solution for Your Business
When it comes to shipping internationally, there are many different factors that’ll determine which shipping option is best for your company.
The first step is to understand your product. The size, weight, whether it’s perishable, fragile, and more will all factor into which shipment option is best. Your budget will also need to factor in how reliable and quick each shipment option is.
All of this can feel overwhelming when you’re looking at global supply chains, which is why it’s essential that you take the guesswork out of the equation. Airfreight, for example, can be the best option for your type of product, but if you want to streamline the shipment so it costs less and gets to you sooner, you’ll want to invest in consolidation services that take on more than one of your shipment needs at once. Put your trust in the experts, and you can truly start to break out on the international stage.
Your Shipping Options
There are many different shipping options, but when it comes to international options, you’re mostly limited to these top four:
Airfreight is a fast and efficient way to ship your goods internationally. It is ideal for small, high-value products that need to be delivered quickly. Airfreight is more expensive than other shipping options, but it is worth the cost if you need your products delivered quickly.
Sea freight is a cost-effective option for shipping large volumes of goods internationally. It is ideal for bulky, heavy items that are not time-sensitive. Sea freight is slower than airfreight, but it is more cost-effective and can take on more weight. Food, for example, is actually shipped through this method most often in special temperature-controlled containers. If the item has a particularly short shelf-life, however, it would be sent by air.
By Van or Truck
Shipping by van or truck is a popular option for shipping goods within a country. It is ideal for small to medium-sized businesses that need to transport their goods to customers or retailers. Shipping by van or truck is cost-effective and reliable. Businesses can even look into partnering with a company that operates an electric fleet to reduce emissions.
Shipping by train is a good option for businesses that must transport goods across long distances within a country or even a continent like Europe. It is cost-effective and environmentally friendly, and very easy to track. Keep in mind that shipping products by train are typically slower than shipping by van or truck since trains need to go from hub to hub, but it is more cost-effective since you don’t need to book out the entire train to get your products from point A to point B.