International Shipping Mistakes Businesses Have To Avoid

Adrian Cruce
3 min readJun 9, 2020

Most online businesses eventually make some mistakes when they expand and they need to deal with international shipping. This is because of the fact that the process is much more complex than what you might initially think. When mistakes appear and they are not properly and efficiently handled, the business loses customers and money.

Fortunately, international shipping is not as complicated as you might think, especially when you work with a really good shipping company. However, at the same time, you need to focus on the most common mistakes made. They are quickly presented below.

Mistiming Exports And Imports

The most important thing with cross-border shipping is timing. When you first get involved in such operations, exports and imports are very easy to mistime. This can easily lead to unhappy customers and service delays. In order to avoid this, you should consider:

· Getting shipping quotes before shipment date.

· Making sure shipments match freight rate quotes.

· Carrying out research in order to properly approximate the duration of import and export.

· Keeping in touch with the freight forwarder.

Not Insuring Shipped Goods

You should always be prepared for the unexpected when you ship something internationally. You might end up having to deal with accidents, damaged cargo ships, natural disasters, piracy, stolen goods, and more. Such unforeseen events can be protected with a good insurance policy.

Make sure that:

· You fully understand available insurance options.

· You understand what is covered by the insurance policy and what is not covered.

· You understand cargo type for exporting and importing.

· There are no special provisions to remember.

Choosing The Lowest Freight Rates

It is normal to look for something affordable. However, when you just go for the cheapest possible freight rates, you set yourself up to a horrible experience. There are forwarders that offers incredibly cheap rates. The problem is that international shipping services offered in this case are most likely of a very low quality.

Avoid all problems associated with choosing sub-par services with low freight rates by:

· Analyzing company reputation.

· Figuring out how good customer service is.

· Reading genuine reviews that are written by past customers.

· Looking for recommendations that are reliable.

Not Fully Understanding Regulations

When you ship products from a country to the next, you have to deal with specific regulations that apply to cross-border delivery. You have to understand laws in all countries where packages arrive and laws that apply from where you ship. If you do not, huge problems appear.

Incorrectly Packaging Goods

There is no customer out there that will be happy to receive goods that are damaged. This is especially the case when the problem is incorrect packaging. In order to avoid such a problem, you need to work with a shipping company that knows all that is needed to protect what is shipped.


The truth is that for most businesses out there that ship products overseas, the most important thing is to work with a reputable shipping company that has huge reputation and that is well-respected in the industry.