Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Shipping international from your ETSY shop

International shipping is a great way to drive more busy to your etsy shop. This is a great way to gain a wide variety of an audience. Me I love my international buyers, couldn't live without them. If you don't offer international shipping you might just want to consider doing this.

I know there are lots of people that wonder how do I start to offer international shipping? You can always go to http://www.usps.com/ and do some reasearch on certain forms that you would need. The picture above show the US custom form that you need to attach to packages under 13 oz (if package is larger click usps link above to find out which form you need). This custom form is the most important piece to attach to your package before heading off to the post office to ship. Well of course you know all that other good stuff like the address and postage is important too.

This form has boxes that you can check to let customs know if it is a gift, commercial sample, documents, and other. With my international orders I ship from my etsy shop I alway check the box beside "other". I have seen where some international buyers have had to pay an extra cost when one of these boxes aren't checked or the wrong box is checked. Next you want to move on to the "Quanity and detailed description of contents. I know there is only a little space but I try to describe exactly what's in side. For shipping my wallets I put "1 Cotton Fabric Wallet". Next to that you have to put the weight of your item. If you don't know then you can fill it in at the post office when your clerk weighs your package. I picked me up a postal scale from ebay so that I can figure out the weight myself. Put the total weight in the "total weight" box. (Gosh I've had this scale since 2004 and she is still kickin' it) . Next to the weight goes the value of your item. This is the actual price that your customer paid for the product minus the shipping cost. After this, total your figures and write them in the total value box. If you have commercial items this would go in the "For commercial items only" box.

Now flip over to the other side and write down your address in the sender's box. The in the addresse's box write down the address of where you package is going to be sent to. Now that thats all done sign and date on the bottom of the green side and on the bottom of the white side. Attach to your package. Just a tip: I would leave the white part attach to the green form and let your postal clerk remove this part. This is kept at the post office on file for 30 days.

SO now you should be ready to accept international shipping for your etsy shop..

5 comments:

  1. Thanks for the tutorial. I know I was really nervous the first time I shipped an international order. That would have been great to have read! Thanks!
    -10oneworld

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  2. This is great information. Sometimes those forms can be so confusing.

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  3. I am still confused. What box do you check? What box do you mean by the "box beside" other? Isn't everything we ship as a seller a commercial item?

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  4. Thanks for the tips, the last time I shipped internationally, my postal clerk told me that they no longer allow those green customs forms, and had me fill out a much larger all white form. Do you know anything about this?

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  5. Thanks! I knew there was more to international than meets the eye, that's why I stayed within US until I knew more. You're great!

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Thanks so much for your comment! I just love reading about what's on your mind!