1)Introduction to International Courier Services in eCommerce
When shipping away from India, there are several courier services. Shipping and logistics are critical parts of any business, but they can be especially challenging for international businesses. When you need to get a package or parcel to its destination on time and intact, international courier services are the best way to go.
In a world marred with uncertainties, one thing we know for certain is that online shopping is the way of the future. The eCommerce industry currently serves over 100 million customers across India.
But what if ecommerce enterprises extend their reach to eager customers across the oceans? A whole new avenue for information and growth opens up. Your potential consumer base would go from 100 million to nearly 2 billion.
While there are many benefits to international shipping (which we will be discussing), you can only reap those benefits when you’ve got the right courier partner(s). In this article, we’ll look at what international courier services entail and which companies provide the best. We’ll also walk you through a few things to remember when including the cost of international courier services in your strategy.
2)What is International Courier Service?
International courier services are exactly what the name suggests. Courier companies offer services that enable eCommerce enterprises to ship orders to customers in foreign countries. This isn’t an easy task. It requires a well-distributed and connected network of transportation units, hub & dispatch centers, fulfillment centers, and numerous other resources.
When orders need to be delivered across borders, courier companies that provide international courier services need to be familiar with the legal requirements of the destination country. Knowing the rules and regulations of the concerned nations is the foremost way to ensure unnecessary delays and losses are avoided.
The core of international services is navigating these potential restrictions and building a streamlined courier mechanism for traversing long distances. Together, these ensure maximum order fulfillment across borders.
3)Top 15 Best International Courier Services Companies When Shipping Away from India [2023 Updated List]
We’ve already emphasized the importance of tying up with the right courier partner, i.e., one that provides international courier services. You would want a courier partner that is established and experienced globally, in addition to one that is equipped to handle the needs of the eCommerce industry.
India has over 150 courier companies, most of which cater to eCommerce businesses. Not all of these companies provide international courier services. However, a few are at the top of their game and offer the best international courier services for e-commerce shipping from India.
FedEx has been operational since 1971, and in addition to having a pin code reach of 19000+ within India, it also operates globally in 220+ countries. FedEx offers various international courier services based on location, the volume of orders, and other metrics, like FedEx International Economy, FedEx International First, and FedEx International Priority.
|Founder||Frederick W. Smith|
|Headquarters||Memphis, Tennessee, US|
|Products, Services, and Benefits||Transportation, Services, Ecommerce, Cold Chain Transport, Dangerous Goods, Bulk Shipping, Shipment insurance, Temperature controlled fleets, Customs Clearance|
Aramex is a global carrier from the UAE that has been providing international courier services since 1997. In India, it operates as an acquisition of Delhivery and reaches 220+ countries. Ecommerce businesses can select either their Export Express services or Export Value. The former offers speedier international courier services, and the latter offers more cost-effective ones.
|Founder||Fadi Ghandour, Bill Kingson|
|Products, Services, and Benefits||Express logistics, Domestic Express, Freight Forwarding, Shop and Ship, Warehousing, DDP, DDU|
BlueDart has an expansive reach of 35000+ pin codes in India, offering international delivery in over 220 countries across the globe. It has an established presence in these countries, providing quicker, value-based, and reliable international courier services. Many consider it a faster albeit costlier alternative for handling cross-border orders.
|Company Name||Blue Dart|
|Founder||Khushroo Dubash, Tushar Jani, Clyde Cooper|
|Headquarters||Mumbai, Maharashtra, India|
|Products, Services, and Benefits||Delivery, Express mail, third-party logistics, freight forwarding, Same Day Delivery, Overnight Shipping|
Delhivery is a popular courier partner, founded in India in 2011, that reaches 17500+ Indian pin codes. It is a favorite among eCommerce businesses for its effective domestic delivery and international courier delivery services. Delhivery uses a tech-enabled integrated system to provide international courier services via air and sea freight at competitive prices.
|Founder||Sahil Barua, Mohit Tandon, Bhavesh Manglani, Suraj Saharan, Kapil Bharati|
|Headquarters||Gurugram, Haryana, India|
|Products, Services, and Benefits||Express Parcel Delivery, Freight Forwarding, Cross Border Services, Supply Chain Management, Fulfillment services, Digital Services, 3PL Logistics|
Ecom Express is similar to Delhivery in numerous ways. It is an Indian company known for its wide reach within the country (27000+ pin codes), which uses an integrated system to provide international courier and tracking services to eCommerce enterprises. With Ecom Express, you receive aid in navigating through customs clearance alongside doorstep international delivery.
|Company Name||Ecom Express|
|Founder||T. A. Krishnan, Manju Dhawan, K. Satyanarayana and Sanjeev Saxena|
|Headquarters||Gurugram, Haryana, India|
|Products, Services, and Benefits||Express Services, Fulfillment services, Digital Services, 3PL Logistics, Ground Services, Reverse Logistics, QC services, Cargo Handling|
Founded in 1990, India-based courier company DTDC has made a name for itself as one of the most prolific domestic and global service providers. It uses a strategically designed system of offices and distribution centers spread across 240+ countries, including numerous SAARC countries and even parts of China, to provide Express International Courier services and International COD (cash on delivery).
|Founder||Debasish Chakraborty, Subhasish Chakraborty|
|Products, Services, and Benefits||Delivery, Express Mail, Third Party Logistics, Ecommerce delivery, Doorstep Delivery, Packaging Materials, Pallet Box, Bulk Shipments|
DHL began its logistics journey in 1969, making it one of the oldest internationally operational courier services that cater to the Indian eCommerce market. DHL has the benefits of warehouse and transportation management and is known for its environmentally-friendly courier services. It offers international courier services using air, rail, and sea transportation.
|Founder||Adrian Dalsey, Robert Lynn, Larry Hillblom|
|Products, Services, and Benefits||Courier, parcel delivery, logistics, freight forwarding, supply chain management, fulfillment center, Contract Logistics|
India Post is an initiative of the Ministry of Communication and Technology and is run by the Department of Post. India Post is the oldest and most reliable postal service available in India. It provides a limited range of international courier services to 200+ countries by air, which includes tracking services, and is known for its low rates.
|Company Name||India Post|
|Founder||Government of India|
|Headquarters||New Delhi, India|
|Products, Services, and Benefits||Postal Service, Mail Delivery, Insurance, Ecommerce, International Air Parcels, Expedited Shipping, Track and Trace|
Pickrr is one of India’s largest eCommerce courier solutions. As an aggregation platform, in addition to being a courier services provider, it reaches all pin codes within India and 200+ foreign countries. Pickrr offers flexible courier options at the lowest rates available to different courier partners.
|Founder||Ankit Kaushik, Rhitiman Majumder, and Gaurav Mangla|
|Headquarters||Gurugram, Haryana, India|
|Products, Services, and Benefits||Shipping and Delivery, Scheduled Pickup, Performance Analytics, SaaS, Automated Carrier Selection, Third Party Logistics, Ecommerce delivery|
UPS is a common carrier in the United States, but it also operates as an international courier services provider for the Indian eCommerce industry. It is known for handling a wider range of freight, including live animals and hazardous goods. It provides expedited international courier services, enabling doorstep delivery across borders within 5 days of ordering.
|Founder||James E. Casey|
|Headquarters||Atlanta, Georgia, US|
|Products, Services, and Benefits||Courier express services, freight forwarding services, logistics, fulfillment services, warehousing, inventory management|
3.11)The Professional Couriers
TPC is one of the best international couriers in India for fast and secure shipments. It provides freight management and cargo shipping services to over 200 countries worldwide. The Professional Couriers operate 2 international warehouses for easier order fulfillment.
The TPC website has all the information on prohibited items for international shipping. Customs duties are often handled by TPC, except for countries like Bangladesh, Kuwait, Qatar, etc. They provide 24/7 shipment visibility on all international packages.
|Company Name||The Professional Couriers|
|Products, Services, and Benefits||
Express delivery, Mail service, Global logistics solutions, Student delivery, Cargo shipping, International e-commerce shipping, Packaging
WOW Express is known in the international e-commerce logistics market for excellent warehousing solutions, e-fulfillment services, and international cargo freight. It streamlines first-mile and last-mile delivery problems with the help of its trained delivery experts.
It uses GPS-enabled transportation vehicles and route optimization to find the fastest way to the customer's doorstep. With Wow Express, e-commerce companies can reduce paperwork with digital PODs and invoices.
|Company Name||WOW Express|
|Founder||Sandeep Padoshi, Jayesh Kamat, Mazhar Faruqi|
|Products, Services, and Benefits||
Reverse logistics, Supply chain operations, Warehousing, Storage and Distribution, Q-commerce, Last Mile Delivery, and First Mile logistics.
FarEye is a supply chain management and courier delivery company providing intelligent logistics solutions to 30+ countries. It started in 2013 and has since established offices in 6 major countries.
FarEye is the perfect carrier for shipping away from India to international locations because it offers real-time visibility of orders throughout the shipping process. It offers a smooth delivery experience for e-commerce sellers with automatic task allocation, route optimization, and 24/7 customer support. It is an experienced courier service provider for B2B, B2C, and D2C brands.
|Company Name||Far Eye|
|Founder||Gautam Kumar, Kushal Nahata|
|Products, Services, and Benefits||
Supply chain, Courier delivery, Logistics solutions, Trucking, 3PL, On-demand delivery, Express shipping, Last-mile delivery
JUSDA is a subsidiary of the Foxconn Technology group. It was established in India in 2017 to support the needs of the fast-growing logistics sector. JUSDA has over 20 years of expertise managing worldwide supply chain and logistics operations.
Some notable services offered by this courier service provider are ground, air, and ocean freight shipping, end-to-end delivery management, LTL shipping, warehouse management, etc.
|Products, Services, and Benefits||
Courier service, freight forwarding, Express logistics, Cross-border e-commerce, Delivery management
United States Postal Service is the national postal service of the US. USPS is the oldest and among the most trustworthy courier service providers for shipping from India to the United States. It offers international flat rate shipping for e-commerce companies in India.
USPS is equipped to handle various kinds of packages. They even provide several sizes of packaging boxes, pallet boxes, and other packing materials like tape, bubble wrap, and plastic-free materials. All orders can be tracked on the USPS website in real time.
|Company Name||United States Postal Service|
|Founder||United States Congress|
|Headquarters||Washington, D.C., United States|
|Products, Services, and Benefits||
Mail service, Courier delivery, Parcel shipping, International delivery, Express delivery
4)How to Choose the Best International Courier Services Company For Your eCommerce Business?
Even if your eCommerce enterprise is shipping 10,000 orders a month, it’s highly unlikely that you would be able to engage with 10 different courier partners simultaneously. At most, you would take the aid of 2-5 courier partners, of which only some will be charged with handling international couriers. This means you need to shorten your list of 10 to 2 or 3. Now, this might sound like a difficult task, but you can determine the quality of international courier services from reviews of past and existing customers.
Beyond that, the most important thing is to ensure that the international courier services company you choose is compatible with your ecommerce business. Primarily, you need to have a clear understanding of your courier strategy. The following base criteria will help you determine this strategy and how an international courier services company will fit.
Every courier company has a different reach, both domestically and internationally. You would need to consider both reaches. The ideal international courier services provider can also operate effectively, as per your business requirements, within the borders of your country.
International couriers offer a wide range of services to help you get your products to their destination quickly and safely. They have extensive networks of agents around the world, so they can get your products to where they need to go, no matter where in the world your customers are located. Plus, they have years of experience shipping sensitive and valuable cargo, so you can trust them to handle your most important shipments.
If you are an ecommerce business shipping orders internationally, you know that the cost of couriers can add up quickly. Between customs fees, packaging costs, and courier rates, it's important to find ways to reduce your shipping expenses.
Considering the cost of international courier services requires an exhaustive analysis beyond the base rate charged. You must also look at what services are encompassed in that rate and how those services enable you to make a greater profit or cut costs in other areas.
When shipping items internationally, it is important to consider the shipping duration of the courier service. Some couriers may take longer than others to deliver the package, impacting your bottom line.
Speedy delivery is a must in today’s world, filled with demanding customers. Numerous courier companies provide expedited international delivery services that are highly effective. You would need one that gives you the most options and best rates for express international courier services.
When you're running an eCommerce business, the reliability of your international courier service is critical. Any delay can mean lost sales and dissatisfied customers. So, how do you ensure you get the best possible service?
A reliable courier partner is a standard you want to keep for any carrier you’re tying up with. However, in the case of international courier services, this reliability refers to the number of orders they successfully deliver across borders and the services they provide to help guarantee these successful deliveries.
International courier services encompass more than just transportation. It may also include specialized handling of certain types of orders, doorstep delivery, proof of delivery, fast COD reconciliation, and numerous other potential necessities. The right permutation and combination of services can enable you to serve your international customers better.
When shipping products to customers worldwide, you need a courier with an exceptional customer support system. A customer care team can help reduce WISMO calls by addressing customer queries before they become angry complaints. They can also help online companies gauge customer satisfaction and improve the post-purchase experience of their customers.
4.7)Types of Delivery Services
There are many types of delivery services offered by international couriers. When selecting the best service for your needs, you must understand what kind of delivery options you need for your company. Almost all international courier companies offer both Economy and Express delivery. But if you require specialized services like on-demand delivery, scheduled delivery, overnight delivery, etc., you must talk to your courier provider about that in advance.
4.8)Safety and Insurance
In the world of ecommerce, shipping insurance is an important topic to consider. For businesses that rely on the shipment of goods to customers, ensuring those items arrive safely and promptly is essential. Unfortunately, accidents happen, so it's important to have a solid shipping insurance policy in place.
Shipping consumer goods, domestic or international, involves some risk. Items may get damaged in transit, or shipments may get lost during sorting at distribution hubs. Whatever the case, the store owner should not be the only one shouldering the burden of such a loss. This is why you need to hire an international logistics company that provides shipping insurance.
4.9)Live Order Tracking
In today's digital age, customers expect a high level of transparency and communication from the businesses they do business with. To meet customer expectations and keep them informed about their order status, ecommerce businesses need to have a system in place for tracking orders in real-time. By providing your customers with up-to-date information on their order status, you can keep them informed and ensure that they are satisfied with the process.
As an ecommerce business, you know that returns are a fact of life. Even with the most careful planning and attention to detail, customers sometimes need to return an item for one reason or another. When managing returns, it's important to have a system that makes the process as quick and easy as possible for you and your customers. Customers who are unhappy with their purchase often want to return the product. This can be a challenge for ecommerce businesses that an international courier company can help sort.
5)Why Do You Need International Courier Services?
As you look through all of this information, you might wonder whether you need international courier services. At the end of the day, reaching out to an international audience is an investment. It’s important to understand the value of your investment and why you’re making it. And ultimately, you’ll only invest if what you’re getting out of it exceeds the value of what you’re putting in.
This depends on what stage of growth your eCommerce company is in and your goals. As your trajectory continues upwards, you may find that the benefits of international delivery listed below align with your objectives.
5.1)Bigger Customer Base
One of the main benefits of taking your ecommerce enterprise across the seas is getting more customers. Once you can ship to a foreign nation, like the US or Canada, a new target market becomes available. You get access to 2.1 billion shoppers the world over.
5.2)Join the International Market
The global ecommerce market is valued at trillions of dollars, a number estimated to continue growing on an upward trajectory. Expanding your services to reach international customers enables you to experience a new level of growth in sales.
5.3)Exposure to New Market Trends
When you join the ranks of top-rated internationally renowned businesses, you get the opportunity to tap into their wells of knowledge. You can learn from different nations and cultures how to anticipate customer needs and stay ahead of the game.
5.4)Added Seasonal Sales
Another bonus with a culturally diverse clientele is that your business can now operate successfully all year round. A slow season in your country of origin may be a spirited season in a foreign nation. A little research and targeting marketing campaigns can ensure you get the most from various global festivities. Think of it like this. Just as the Diwali season ends here, Thanksgiving and Christmas pop up across the seas. All 3 occasions are perfect opportunities to boost sales.
5.5)Become a Global Brand
The growth and development of an eCommerce business are measurable in more than just order volumes and profit. The goal of every business is to be a household name at the height of popularity. Expanding to an international market gives you a chance to become a global brand name, among the most successful companies in the world.
6)What is the Importance of Budgeting For International Shipping Services
Many eCommerce businesses try to reach an international audience, but not all succeed. The jump from domestic-only delivery to domestic and international delivery cannot be made easily. It requires careful planning, strategic budgeting, and a strong heart. As a great Jedi Knight once said, “Try not. Do. Or do not.”
As we mentioned in the previous segment, International courier services are an investment, and investments need to be considered. Without proper financial planning, international expansions cannot be done. This may sound like a drastic statement, but failing to do so could result in extreme losses that your business may not survive. And doing so will give you the competitive advantages listed below.
6.1)Manage Increasing Order Volumes
You know the age-old saying, “Be careful what you wish for”? It applies doubly so in business. Your new international audience may become enamored with your brand and clamor for more of your product. With a strategic budget in mind before expansion, you can prepare yourself for this influx of orders.
6.2)Reach a Wider Audience
Think of your budgets like a war strategy and yourself as Alexander the Great (but more pleasant). The further you plan, the more efficiently you can expand your operations. First, you expand to America's east coast, then to the west coast. Slowly you set up operations in major Canadian cities. Next thing you know, your brand has a customer base spread out across the entire continent of North America.
6.3)Set Boundaries With Courier Partners
Having a well-thought-out financial plan and courier strategy (i.e., the essential elements of budgeting for international courier services) means you know exactly what you want to do when you approach international courier companies. This clarity lets you set strict terms concerning international courier services, especially pricing and fees.
Your budget essentially acts as a boundary between you and your courier partner, giving you greater control. You will also have greater leverage with positive projections for potential order volume growth.
6.4)Offer Lower Courier Charges
Customers are looking for ways to get everything they need cheaper and faster. You may lose customers if they determine the delivery charges to be excessive or beyond their means. With a budget in mind, you can divide the cost of your international courier services amongst customers equally, either by including it in the price or charging separately. You can thereby keep the shipping fee you charge to customers lower and, therefore, more appealing.
6.5)Keep Your Profit Margin High
Every eCommerce endeavor begins and ends with the same purpose, i.e., to make money. Maximum profitability is the holy grail of the eCommerce market. And every smart entrepreneur knows profitability isn’t about which business gets the most income. It's about which business knows how to balance their income with their costs.
This is the major role of budgeting for international courier services. It's an opportunity to know in advance exactly what outcomes you will receive from your investment when. You can create a map to the highest point of profitability, the Everest of the e-commerce world.
7) Final Conclusion
Going international is a pivotal moment for any great eCommerce venture. One of the highlights of every successful eCommerce journey is the moment they receive international recognition. And one of the major goals for those destined to succeed is international exposure. It is undoubtedly a step-by-step process to reach these heights of prowess in the global marketplace. Expanding your serviceability to foreign markets and entering the import/export industry is one of the first steps.
This can be a slow process, requiring you to start with one region, then two, then three. Suddenly, you find your business is listed alongside the largest multinational eCommerce conglomerates in the world. You must employ the best international courier services and providers to climb this intercontinental ladder. This will help you keep costs low, profits high, and customers happy. These are the secret ingredients in the recipe for success.
1. Which is the cheapest international courier service provider shipping from India?
India's cheapest international courier service providers are USPS, Ecom Express, and India Post. However, USPS only ships to the US.
2. Which are the best international courier service providers?
India's best international courier service providers are FedEx, DHL, and UPS.
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