Don’t let international shipping scare you. It’s a great way to diversify a store’s customer base and ultimately increase revenue. If you’re not considering international shipping, you’re likely leaving money on the table. Statista predicts worldwide ecommerce sales will amount to $4.5 trillion by 2021, a 95 percent increase from $2.3 trillion estimated in 2017.
When you first start shipping globally, it’s hard to know where to start with customs forms, local Post Office policies, and country-specific shipping restrictions. A great way for first-timers to dip their toes in the global market is with shipping consolidators.
What are shipping consolidators?
Shipping consolidators, also known as postal consolidators, freight consolidators, or Postal Qualified Wholesalers (PQWs), partner with the USPS and the local Post Office of countries around the world, so that businesses in the U.S. can easily ship internationally at affordable rates.
Just like the name describes, shipping consolidators group packages from multiple customers into one shipment that’s headed to the destination country. Once it arrives, the local Post Office of the destination country will separate the packages and deliver each one to the intended recipient. Grouping the packages into one shipment allows consolidators to offer discounted rates typically reserved for large-volume shippers.
Shipping consolidators also go through a rigorous vetting process with the Postal Service to make sure that they comply with all requirements.
Where do shipping consolidators ship?
Shipping consolidators are well known for helping U.S.-based businesses ship internationally. Some consolidators also support domestic delivery, including DHL eCommerce and RR Donnelley.
Which shipping consolidators are supported by Shippo?
Shippo partners with six major consolidators. Today, we’re announcing our new partnership with Globegistics! Users can integrate their Globegistics account with Shippo to access rates, offer tracking, and complete manifests and customs forms.
We’re also partnered with several other shipping consolidators. Here’s the full list:
How to ship internationally with consolidators — a step-by-step guide for Shippo web users
Step 1: Create an account with the consolidator
We’re happy to make an introduction, answer any questions, or provide a recommendation. Reach out to email@example.com if you’d like to chat about your shipping strategy.
Once you select a consolidator, you’ll want to create an account with them and agree on rates and terms.
Step 2: Connect your shipping consolidator account to Shippo
From there, you’ll need your carrier account credentials for the consolidator you selected, so that you can connect your account with your Shippo account.
In your web app, select “Carriers” from the menu on the left side, and select “Add Carrier Account”. Select the shipping consolidator you want to add, and then fill out the fields requesting your account credentials. You’ll then be able to choose your shipping consolidator when you create new shipping labels.
How to connect your shipping consolidator account with Shippo — for API users.
If you use our API to integrate with other platforms, you can find the API documentation here to connect with different carriers and shipping consolidators.
You may also be interested in our comprehensive guide to international shipping for anyone looking to take the leap selling overseas. Good luck in taking your business global!
Shippo is a multi-carrier API and web app that helps retailers, marketplaces and platforms connect to a global network of carriers. Businesses use Shippo to get real-time rates, print labels, automate international paperwork, track packages and facilitate returns. Shippo provides the tools to help businesses succeed through shipping.