Shopify, as a leading e-commerce platform, equips its users with a wide variety of international shipping capabilities. This functionality allows them to expand their market presence, manage cross-border logistics, and create a satisfactory shopping environment.
Today, we look at Shopify international shipping, including what it means, how it works, how much it costs, how long it takes, and helpful third-party applications.
What is Shopify international shipping?
Shopify international shipping refers to a series of features Shopify offers to online business owners, with which they can sell and ship products to customers living in various countries and regions in the world.
Such functionality has a wide range of features that are of great use in terms of international logistics. Examples include but are not limited to customizable shipping rates, integrated shipping carriers, and real-time shipping calculations.
Shopify’s international shipping enables e-commerce professionals to expand their customer groups globally
and serves as an effective and efficient tool in managing challenges in transnational trade.
How do you ship internationally with Shopify?
Utilizing Shopify’s international shipping involves several steps. Here’s a general guide.
First, enable your store to conduct international trade and shipping by going to “Settings” and then “Shipping.” Under the “Shipping zones” category, you can choose the desired places to ship your products.
Second, set shipping rates. There are two options available. You can either configure different shipping costs based on attributes such as product weight, price, destination, and so on or decide on a fixed rate for every order.
Third, select shopping companies. After adding shipping rates, you can choose from the many carriers supported by Shopify, including DHL, FedEx, and UPS.
With these three steps, your store is ready for cross-border orders and deliveries. However, there are following steps to make sure international shipping functions well.
First, inform your customers of shipping details. Shopify can automatically generate such information, but you should always make sure consumers receive essential data, such as estimated delivery time and product quantities (in case some customers need transshipment).
Second, place test orders to check everything goes well. You can check whether the carrier you choose satisfies your needs for international shipping by placing test orders. If problems occur, you can always make adjustments accordingly. It’s crucial that the final result contributes to a satisfactory customer experience.
Third, monitor and assess international shipping performance. It is advised that you regularly check and summarize the performance of cross-border deliveries. Also, online store owners are recommended to stay informed about any changes in laws and regulations associated with international shipment.
In general, Shopify offers user-friendly tutorials and features for international shipping, such as multi-currency and multi-language support. However, you can always turn to third-party applications for help, which will be covered later.
How much does it cost for Shopify international shipping?
The costs for international shipping on the Shopify platform depend on a wide variety of factors. Here are a few of them.
1. Shipping rates
Users can customize shipping rates on Shopify. The three options are fixed costs, customized costs, and carrier-calculated costs. Merchants can decide on the shipping rates based on the realities of their stores, like what they sell and the values of the products.
2. Shipping provider rates
Online business owners can choose different shipping providers, hence different shipping fees. One advantage is that Shopify allows its users to integrate desired carriers into the website. Popular delivery companies, such as DHL, UPS, and FedEx, are all available.
3. Shipping destinations
The costs of international shipping on Shopify also rely on destination countries. Distance is, without any doubt, a vital factor. In addition, some countries have strict regulations about customs and imports. Therefore, it is recommended that cross-border business owners keep an eye on the latest news about destination countries’ shipment regulations.
4. Shipping method
Air freight providers and sea freight providers charge differently. Such a factor will also influence international shipping rates on Shopify.
5. Product parameters
Whether you sell earrings or refrigerators affects the costs of international shipping. Generally, heavier or larger packages result in higher shipping rates.
6. Additional services
Delivery companies often offer additional services and charge fees for them accordingly. E-commerce merchants should balance the value of those services and the costs of the products. For instance, glassware sellers might want to buy insurance, and people selling electronic devices might hope to add a signature confirmation service to the list.
How long does it take with Shopify international shipping?
Like the costs of Shopify international shipping, its time spans also depend on a range of factors, some of which are the same.
1. Shipping destination
As mentioned in the previous section, different countries have different rules and regulations regarding international goods and shipments. A typical example is customs clearance, which is a crucial step in international shipping. In some countries, imports are carefully examined by the customs staff before domestic delivery. In such a situation, consumers might receive products later than expected.
2. Shipping method
How the products are shipped from one country to another or even one continent to another leads to different durations. Shipment to nearby countries may take less time than to remote places.
3. Other factors
Unexpected things happen. Events like extreme weather conditions, sudden conflicts, political issues, and natural disasters influence the delivery time of international shipments. Predictable factors include holidays, religious traditions, shopping seasons, etc.
To provide consumers with satisfactory shipping experiences, you need to make sure of the factors mentioned above and other essential points. It is advised that Shopify users in transnational businesses pay attention to changes in shipment regulations both on the platforms and in destination countries.
Best 5 Shopify international shipping apps
One of the reasons why Shopify is a user-friendly platform is that it allows online business owners to take full advantage of third-party applications. Here are some helpful tools in the field of international shipping.
Featuring functionalities such as all-in-one tracking, branded tracking pages, shipping notifications, intelligent analytics, and seamless integrations, ParcelPanel provides e-commerce merchants with the best post-purchase solution.
There are four plans available: free, essential ($9/month), professional ($49/month), and enterprise ($399/month), each with powerful features. You can always start with a free trial and then choose the plan that best suits your business.
This 5-star tracking solution is your best choice for a post-purchase solution on Shopify.
As an all-in-one shipping solution, ShipperHQ gives online store owners granular control over shipping arrangements, letting them customize the shipment options they offer their customers.
The application’s features include but are not limited to real-time shipping rates across various carriers, accurate delivery dates, and automated calculation of shipping rates based on carts. In such a situation, it helps to decrease the number of abandoned carts and increase conversion rates.
It is worth noting that ShipperHQ automatically generates rates from various warehouses, which is a vital functionality for dropshipping merchants.
Designed for Shopify stores, Easyship is a convenient tool trusted by thousands of e-commerce professionals. Such an application helps you save money, increase conversions, and boost revenues by taking care of the shipping.
Its functionalities include but are not limited to order synchronization, workflow automation, carrier comparison, flexible insurance coverage, and optional prepaid returns.
Easyship has a rating of 4.1 stars on the Shopify App Store, which proves its popularity and excellence.
With Shippo, your process of Shopify international shipping is facilitated in three easy steps.
First, connect the application with your store with a simple click. Then, Shippo automatically imports orders across all your channels, after which you can compare many shipping options. Shippo offers access to 40+ carriers worldwide, including UPS, USPS, and FedEx. Third, choose your desired delivery company and send emails.
Shippo, an end-to-end multi-carrier shipping software, satisfies your needs as your business grows. You cannot miss this 4-star application trusted by over 100k brands.
Ready to save your time on shipping? ShipStation in the Shopify App Store is a handy tool.
Connecting all your stores and importing all your orders, the application helps ease the burden of managing comprehensive shipping orders. With a wide range of carrier options, such as UPS, USPS, Canada Post, Royal Mail, Australia Post, and DHL Express, ShipStation lets you spend less on international shipping. Automated workflows are also time-savers.
Released in 2011, this long-established third-party shipping application on Shopify has a rating of 3.7 stars.
1. Can I ship internationally with Shopify?
The answer is affirmative. Shopify is designed to support both domestic and international e-commerce. You can sell your products to clients located in a wide variety of countries and regions by integrating shipping applications into your store. A recommended list is in the previous section.
Remember that the shipping rates and spans depend on various factors, such as shipping methods, shipping destinations, product parameters, and so on. Also, don’t forget to place test orders to ensure that your international shipping on Shopify works perfectly.
2. How do I allow international orders on Shopify?
You can configure your Shopify store with a few steps to allow cross-border orders.
First, go to your admin panel and click “Settings” in the left menu. Then, you find the “Shipping” button, under which there is a “Shipping zones” section. Next, you are free to choose where you allow international orders to be placed.
After setting up shipping rates, customer information, and delivery policies, your store is ready for international shipment.
3. Is Shopify good for international shipping?
Shopify is user-friendly in terms of international shipping, which is one of the reasons why it is a popular e-commerce platform worldwide.
The platform offers online business owners flexibility in configuring shipping settings and integrating delivery companies. In addition, it automatically generates materials for customs clearance, which is convenient for both sellers and buyers.
Third-party applications are always at your disposal when it comes to international shipment. You can choose from multiple shipping solutions in the Shopify App Store.
4. How do I charge international shipping on Shopify?
To charge cross-border shipments on Shopify, you need to set up shipping rates based on a range of factors, such as shipping methods, destination countries, product weights, and so on.
Go to the admin panel and select “Settings,” you can find the “Shipping zones” section. Under this section, you can configure shipping rates for your international orders.
There are three options. First, You can set up a flat rate, which is a fixed price for all orders to one destination place. Or, you can configure shipping rates based on order prices. The next choice is that the shipping costs are decided by how heavy the orders are.
5. What is the cheapest way to ship internationally?
Costs of cross-border shipping depend on several factors, such as distance, weight, methods, and so on. However, there are tricks to finding the cheapest way to ship internationally.
The most direct and convenient way is to use economy shipping services. Many carriers have such services that are more affordable than standard shipping. Or, you can try communicating with delivery companies. Suppose you conduct large-scale business and have a high demand for international shipping every week or month. In that case, chances are that the carrier is willing to design a personalized plan for you, which will be more cost-effective than plans for ordinary people.
Shipping options for businesses are an essential factor to consider, particularly when you conduct transnational trade.
Today, we introduced international shipping for Shopify, including how much it costs and how long it takes. Then, a list of third-party applications is recommended for more effective and efficient cross-border shipment. Regarding delivery options for small businesses, there are also economy services.
In general, Shopify is equipped with handy functionalities for those in the international e-commerce industry. Moreover, you can always turn to third-party applications for help, such as the top recommendation in the previous section, ParcelPanel, which helps optimize the post-purchase environment, minimize abandoned carts, and generate greater revenues.