Expanding the borders of commerce is one of the top benefits of selling online. The Internet allows anyone to buy and sell anything, worldwide. However, we often hear that many sellers are wary of shipping packages overseas because of the many horror stories that they have heard (or experienced first hand). The main issue we hear about is lost packages. The concern is whether these packages are “lost” or being claimed as lost.
We stumbled upon a great Facebook/Twitter post from an eBayer that seemed to hit the nail on the head. We agree wholeheartedly that eBayers who use the USPS and ship Internationally should do so via Priority or Express Mail; not First Class. Below is a snippet of the post:
“Something that sellers should be aware of that is happening is this: an International buyer purchases an item. About three weeks after it has been shipped they file a dispute with Paypal for non-reciept. Since delivery cannot be proved by the seller even though they can see that it was shipped when promised, Paypal refunds the customer. Seller is out the money and never sees the item again. This happened to me so many times that I stopped selling Internationally…”. “…Also, NEVER ship first class to a foreign country. Priority mail or better and if they do not want to pay the shipping fee, they don’t get the item. There is no proof of shipment on line with first class unless you purchase registered mail, which costs about the same as priority.”
International shipping is a very hot topic and anyone trying to open their borders for worldwide shipping should research and understand the benefits and potential pitfalls. We feel that the person who posted the above paragraph summed up the majority of the calls we get about the subject.