Looking for a way to ship internationally without spending an arm and a leg? International customers are attractive to nearly every eCommerce business. The ability to ship internationally opens up endless new markets, which means more sales, which means more money in your pocket! The only problem is, you’ve got to ship your items out—and most international shipping services tend to cost ton of money. Don’t worry, though! That’s where Shipping School comes in. Here’s how to get the cheapest international shipping rates…and how to access them for free.
USPS is Typically the Cheapest Option for Shipping Internationally
The first step to getting the cheapest international shipping rates is to choose the right shipping carrier. 99.99% of the time, the US Postal Service is the cheapest carrier for international shipments. USPS specializes in small, lightweight packages, which naturally describes most eCommerce shipments out there. USPS also partners with foreign postal operators around the world, unlike UPS or FedEx, which are both private companies. For instance, if you’re shipping a package to France, USPS is responsible for getting it to the French customs department. From there, the package is handed off to France’s postal service, La Poste, who then delivers it to its final destination.
Due to these partnerships and rate caps set by the Universal Postal Union, USPS is able to offer the cheapest rates with their international services such as First Class Package International and Priority Mail International.
Get the Cheapest International Shipping Rates by Using Free USPS Shipping Software
Now that you’ve decided to ship with USPS, it’s time to take advantage of online shipping software. When you buy postage online through shipping software, you access a special level of USPS discounts, known as USPS Commercial Pricing rates. USPS typically reserves these discounts for huge shippers sending 50,000+ packages every year. However, due to the size of their customer bases, online shipping software companies pass these discounts to all of their users, regardless of how big or how small! Plain and simple, capturing these USPS discounts is the key to getting the cheapest international shipping rates, and saving the most money.
Oh, and we forgot to mention—the best shipping software companies out there give you these discounts totally free. No hidden fees, no markups, no monthly memberships, no nothing. Who doesn’t love the good ol’ five-finger discount? If that’s not enough to convince you to buy your international labels with online shipping software, I don’t know what is.
Keep Your Boxes as Small (and Lightweight) as Possible
Here’s one last pro tip for you before you leave: the smaller your boxes or envelopes are, the cheaper they’ll be to send. This is generally true for any shipping service, whether domestic or international. With special international services like Simple Export Rate that you can only get when you use online shipping software, you’ll get the cheapest rates when your shipment is the smallest, most lightweight it can be.
So, make sure you’re using the exact size of boxes or envelopes that you need to—nothing less, and nothing more. You’ll thank us later, when your back starts to hurt from carrying around your oversized wallet.
Looking for the right shipping software for you?
To get the cheapest international shipping rates, check out our guide: