Executive Briefings

The Complexities of Cross-Border Delivery

As if domestic delivery weren't tough enough, cross-border shipments entail a whole new set of challenges. Jonathan Matchett, operations director with wnDirect, talks about how service providers are addressing issues of speed, reliability and regulations.

The complexities of cross-border shipping of online orders include the need for proper management of duties and taxes. Retailers can manage them at the point of checkout, or before a parcel is shipped. The collection of proper identification is also important, says Matchett.

Some countries present greater difficulties than others. “We work with the best delivery partner in every country,” Matchett says. That could be a postal operator, courier business or company that combines those services. “It’s very much a local delivery experience.”

The international delivery landscape is changing rapidly. Often that means fewer options for getting packages to their destination. Still, service quality remains paramount. “You have to offer something more,” says Matchett, “some added-value choices to customers.”

In some cases, e-tailers are amassing their own delivery fleets. Many of wnDirect’s customers use its delivery services even when buying product from large online marketplaces such as Amazon.com. “We see that as a positive thing,” says Matchett.

It’s vital to select the right delivery location, and the options today are many. It might be a home delivery, parcel shop or locker placed at a retail location. It might even be the physical store itself. Says Matchett: “Each market is different.”

The “last mile” offers the biggest challenge for online merchandisers and delivery services. “In the final hand-off,” says Matchett, “it’s of vital importance to get it right.”

To view the video in its entirety, click here

The complexities of cross-border shipping of online orders include the need for proper management of duties and taxes. Retailers can manage them at the point of checkout, or before a parcel is shipped. The collection of proper identification is also important, says Matchett.

Some countries present greater difficulties than others. “We work with the best delivery partner in every country,” Matchett says. That could be a postal operator, courier business or company that combines those services. “It’s very much a local delivery experience.”

The international delivery landscape is changing rapidly. Often that means fewer options for getting packages to their destination. Still, service quality remains paramount. “You have to offer something more,” says Matchett, “some added-value choices to customers.”

In some cases, e-tailers are amassing their own delivery fleets. Many of wnDirect’s customers use its delivery services even when buying product from large online marketplaces such as Amazon.com. “We see that as a positive thing,” says Matchett.

It’s vital to select the right delivery location, and the options today are many. It might be a home delivery, parcel shop or locker placed at a retail location. It might even be the physical store itself. Says Matchett: “Each market is different.”

The “last mile” offers the biggest challenge for online merchandisers and delivery services. “In the final hand-off,” says Matchett, “it’s of vital importance to get it right.”

To view the video in its entirety, click here