With online shipping an integral part of consumer’s lives, expanding beyond a local market could have a significant impact on the growth trajectory of a business. Offering the most powerful economy in all of Europe, Germany presents many lucrative opportunities for online retailers. With online eCommerce sales rising, expanding to Germany offers valuable advantages, including global market reach and diversified revenue streams, and gives your business a competitive edge. But it’s essential to ensure that when targeting Germany as your destination country, your shipments arrive on time and with care to sustain profitable success.
This blog will discuss the primary advantages of shipping to Germany for online retailers, how to do so compliantly, and how expanding globally offers exponential growth opportunities.
The steady rise of eCommerce: An online retailers dream
The online eCommerce industry is thriving, as global retail eCommerce sales have reached record highs in recent years, with projections anticipated to exceed $7 trillion by 2025, a significant increase from prior years. This projected rise is due to consumer’s drive for convenience. Shoppers today value ease of use, personalization, and fast delivery speeds. Rather than spend hours of time shopping in stores to potentially leave with nothing, consumers are turning to online shopping to find goods easily and with the convenience of home delivery. With online sales projected to increase steadily, expanding beyond a local market presents lucrative opportunities for online retailers to reach new consumers worldwide. And Germany is a great place to consider.
Shipping to Germany: The land of opportunity
With an estimated population of 84 million people, Germany is a premier location for online retailers to target. Offering the most significant consumer market, Germany relies heavily on imports from other countries in order to meet demands. Raw materials like fuel and oil, medical supplies, vehicles, and clothing items are the top imports, with China, the Netherlands, and the USA as their main trading partners.
As a wealthy European country, German consumers hold high disposable incomes, resulting in a high purchasing power for valuable, quality items. They value luxury and have high living standards, often shopping with more prominent, established brands or online retailers that keep up with the latest trends. Simultaneously, German consumers will seek out deals to purchase goods with the best value. German consumers also value companies prioritizing localization, as German shoppers prefer online shopping in their native language.
With a large population of consumers eager to get their hands on goods from other countries, offering international shipping to Germany could be a catalyst for growth, with many other positive advantages online retailers can take advantage of.
Let’s explore the advantages.
Global Market Reach
Offering international shipping to a country as large as Germany enables online retailers to expand beyond a smaller, local market and tap into new global opportunities. Consumers worldwide have access to the internet and desire goods their native country may not offer. Retailers can then capitalize on the global demand from other countries. Companies like eBay, Apple, and Ikea captured the attention of a German audience through diverse offerings, multiple-tier pricing, and noteworthy shipping speeds, ranking as leading online retailers with significant revenue generated from the German market.
Expanding to new global markets helps retailers stay relevant by increasing their market reach, offering a competitive advantage other online retailers that only ship locally have yet to achieve. Consumers want a variety of choices with fast shipping options. Amazon succeeded by expanding its offerings beyond books and catapulted into success with diverse product offerings and fast, low-cost shipping. Offering international shipping helps online retailers stay relevant in an increasingly demanding eCommerce world.
Diversified Revenue Streams
Diversification of revenue streams can help online retailers withstand economic fluctuations, securing their stability during even the most uncertain economic times. Focusing on one single market leaves little opportunity for growth. Expanding to sizable countries like Germany presents new horizons of opportunity for market expansion, helping to capitalize on products that may be high in demand in other countries.
How to ship compliantly to Germany: Securing online sales
While there is no shortage of growth opportunities when expanding internationally to Germany, it’s essential to finetune your shipping processes to adhere to German customs regulations and ensure timely deliveries across borders. German consumers have high standards for international deliveries and have grown accustomed to a smooth online shopping experience with fast and affordable shipping options.
When shipping to Germany, consider the following:
Shipping to Germany requires packages to clear customs at a European Union or German port of entry. Customs documentation like a commercial invoice, certificate of origin, and customs declaration are necessary, along with special codes or permits for certain items traveling across borders. Familiarizing yourself with EU / German customs regulations and import and export laws can help your online retail business expand to Germany with ease.
In addition to customs documentation, customs duties, also known as taxes, are required on goods traveling from one country to another. Often, these fees are determined prior to shipping but added surcharges or tariffs can affect the final cost, leading to customs delays if not adequately addressed by shippers. Before shipping to Germany, familiarize yourself with the required import duties to ship your products successfully while leaving wiggle room for added shipping costs that could accrue during the customs clearance process.
Packaging and labeling
As an online retailer shipping to Germany, you may find yourself shipping high-value goods or luxury items, as these categories are highly sought after by German consumers. Ensuring your items are appropriately packaged is critical to avoid damaged items or shipping delays from improper packaging. Larger packages will inevitably cost more to ship. Before shipping to Germany, evaluate the proper package size, packing materials, and shipping label requirements necessary to get your items across borders safely and compliantly.
Using bubble wrap or packing peanuts can prevent goods from moving around too much during transit, securing their safe travel. Understanding the precise package dimensions can also help shippers load pallets strategically to avoid damages that accrue higher shipping costs.
A prime disadvantage to online shipping is the inability to try on items before you purchase them. In Germany, apparel and shoes are notable for being returned often by unsatisfied customers, with German consumers returning 50% of the items they buy online. When targeting international locations like Germany, preparing your customer service team for multiple returns is important. Training staff to address concerns efficiently and empathetically can help your company ensure repeat customers.
Multiple delivery options
German consumers want their items fast and with affordable prices that work for their budget. When shipping to Germany, consider working with a shipping provider that offers various shipping options. Along with standard or economy options enabling packages to arrive anywhere from 5-7 business days, providers should also offer priority or express international options, allowing online shoppers to select faster delivery speeds at a higher price if they prefer.
When looking to expand globally to Germany, consider working with a knowledgeable shipping partner with years of international expertise to safeguard your investment. Going beyond a local market is no easy feat. It’s a challenge that should be approached with care and precision.
Shipping to Germany with ePost Global
A key driver in online sales in Germany is the convenience and speed of home delivery. Working with a qualified shipping partner like ePost Global ensures your products arrive in Germany with the utmost care and attention. We offer unparalleled shipping services with a diverse range of flexible options carefully designed to meet your unique shipping demands when expanding to Germany.
Years of international shipping expertise
With over 25 years of experience in the ever-changing world of international shipping and logistics, our team has a track record of successfully developing solutions that fit our customers’ specific needs. Our professional shipping experts know the ins and outs of achieving customs clearance when entering German access points. From obtaining the required customs forms and adequately addressing them to ensuring timely delivery from the initial pick-up to package drop-off at your door, we provide the best shipping experience when expanding to Germany.
Reliable and cost-efficient solutions
When searching for the cheapest way to ship to Germany, conducting thorough research is essential to ensure you receive quality service without sacrificing deliverability. Shipping rates will vary based on many factors like package sizes, the final destination, and the shipping speed. Making sure your provider of choice meets all your shipping needs to get your package safely and compliantly across borders is crucial.
As a full-service shipping company, we’ve established trusted partnerships with courier services beyond traditional shipping companies like DHL and FedEx. Our esteemed alliances allow us to consolidate shipments from multiple businesses, making more efficient use of transportation services when shipping to Germany, resulting in reduced costs and faster transit times. Further, we partner with USPS and other carriers to ensure your package arrives with the utmost care to your German destination, with door-to-door delivery you can count on.
Enhanced tracking and shipping options
German customers value transparency and timely updates on the journey of their package. At ePost, we offer advanced tracking capabilities using valuable data like a tracking number and postal code so your customers can view exactly where their package is on the map, providing clear transparency of precise delivery times or potential delays. Whether you’re seeking standard or priority mail international and express services, we offer enhanced tracking to provide clear visibility, ensuring your international shipments arrive safely and on time. This innovation strengthens our customer’s trust, improves their overall experience, and leads to potential recurring business.
Quality customer service
Obtaining new customers is essential in gaining traction in new markets; however, once you’ve obtained a new customer base, it’s crucial to sustain that relationship to secure business growth. At ePost Global, we prioritize customer care at the center of our services. We understand that each client is unique and aim to surpass expectations when delivering packages throughout Germany.
Shipping to Germany opens up a world of opportunities for business growth for online retailers. From expanding market reach to new audiences to creating unique, diversified revenue streams, going beyond local markets makes profitable advances for your online retail business. When you work with ePost Global, we’ll help you achieve the countless benefits of shipping to Germany while prioritizing quality delivery and unmatched customer care.
If you’re ready to get started and seize the opportunity to expand your business and maximize revenue, contact us. We’re happy to be your international service provider.