9 Tips To Get Goods Delivered At The Right Time And The Right Price

Shipping delays can seem unavoidable, especially if you're inexperienced in shipping and logistics. However, there are a few steps you can take to ensure on-time delivery and minimal complications. We've collected nine tips for how to get your goods safely across international borders.

1. Know your shipping terms

The shipping industry has numerous terminologies that can often be confusing. Having a solid understanding of relevant shipping terms can ensure your shipment documentation is accurate which helps to minimise potential misunderstandings. Here are just a few of the most important terms you should have a keen understanding of:

  • Request Date
  • Original Promise Date
  • Delivery Date
  • Dock Date
  • Ship Date
  • Revised Promise Date
  • Actual Ship Date

Check out our A-Z of Shipping Terms

2. Double-check the documentation

Make sure you have both a commercial invoice and a packing list. You may need additional forms depending on your destination and transportation method. For example, some countries require an inspection certification, a consular invoice, a certificate of origin, or a NAFTA certificate. Cargo shipped overseas requires an ocean bill of lading, while cargo shipped by air requires an air waybill. Double-checking you have everything before you submit anything can save a lot of time.

Ensure your employees verify all information on the documentation, including the correct weight and cost of the goods. Incorrect documentation is one of the most common causes of delayed shipments.

Learn more about the Bill of Lading

3. Include a penalty condition in the agreement

A good supplier doesn't want to lose your business. They should have an interest in providing you with top quality products on time and in quality condition. Placing a penalty clause in the contract can help you incentivise your supplier's best and help you feel safe working with them.

When you purchase from a supplier, you may be inclined to believe that the company is willing to put 100% effort into your booking. However, if this isn't the case, it could result in them shipping your product late.

4. Make preparations for inclement weather

Severe weather can put your delivery in danger. If the weather is too severe, it may be necessary to delay or possibly even cancel your order, putting your business in a frustrating situation.

Working with a transportation company with plans to handle unfortunate weather can help give you a sense of safety when something goes wrong.

5. Obtain the correct shipping and freight permits

To move your goods to the correct locations without delay, you need the appropriate permits. If you don't have the resources or knowledge, make sure to work with a transportation company that offers permit services. They'll be able to obtain necessary licenses for all states and countries that require them.

6. Check your quotes and legal information

Treat international shipping as a legal transaction. When making international shipments, you should survey freight rate quotations and organise shipment in the same way you would any other legal documents.

7. Invest in local warehouses

Warehousing locally can be a better solution for small and mid-sized e-commerce retailers. Investing in strategically located warehouses to cater to areas up to a certain distance from the warehouse can speed up delivery and reduce costs.

Learn all about bonded warehouses

8. Work with reputable shipping partners

When it comes to shipping, reliability is critical. Be sure to find a trusted global transporter that allows you to focus on the service levels of your business. Finding a company that excels in the industry can grant you a sense of safety and even open up more options for you in the future with their existing experience.

9. Make sure you have real-time tracking for your orders

Real-time tracking is one of the best ways to ensure safety and visibility in your shipping process. WTA provides its customers with the ability to track their orders from start to finish, granting them the ability to provide more accurate tracking information to their customers. Using WTA, retailers can increase customer service, make money, and increase profits.
Learn more about the WTA Platform

If you are wanting to learn more about shipping, we have a range of useful resources that will help you learn more. You can review them below in our Shipping Checklist. 

Get the free International Shipping Checklist

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