eBay’s Global Shipping Program is a method of international shipping designed to help sellers expand their customer base by enabling them to ship to over 100 countries around the world. In addition to growing their customer base, the Global Shipping Program also offers a number of perks in terms of shipping times and seller metrics. Keep reading to find out more about how the eBay Global Shipping Program works, and what its potential benefits are for you as a seller.
What does the Global Shipping Program do?
The eBay Global Shipping Program is a logistical solution for US-based sellers who want to open their business to international commerce. Sellers who use the Global Shipping Program partner with eBay in order to fulfill international orders, and in turn enjoy a simpler and safer way to sell internationally.
How does the Global Shipping Program work?
The eBay Global Shipping program can be used to ship different items to different countries, as outlined by eBay’s Global Shipping Program guidelines. When you partner with eBay through the Global Shipping Program, you’ll need to ship orders to one of eBay’s domestic shipping centers, and eBay will handle international shipping directly to your buyer.
What are the benefits of the Global Shipping Program?
Sellers who participate in the Global Shipping program enjoy several benefits beyond a larger customer base and an average 15% increase in sales. Most of those benefits relate to seller metrics for orders processed through the Global Shipping Program, and there are many. For starters, any dispute opened by a buyer due to a lost/damaged in transit item will be closed in your favor, so you won’t incur any damage to your seller metrics and won’t lose out on the money from the sale. You’ll also enjoy an automatic 5-star detailed seller rating for shipping time when you offer and fulfill 1 business day dispatch, and deliver to the domestic shipping center within 4 business days. Another detailed seller metric you’ll enjoy an automatic 5-star rating for is shipping cost, provided you offer free shipping to eBay’s domestic shipping center. If you do charge shipping to the domestic shipping center, a detailed seller rating lower than 5-stars in this metric will not affect your account health. Best of all, you’re 100% protected from neutral and negative feedback relating to damage/delay/loss in transit of an item shipped using the Global Shipping Program – all you need to do is request its removal from eBay!
What are the requirements for the Global Shipping Program?
The Global Shipping Program is open only to US-based sellers who sell on eBay.com – that is, you must be located in the United States, and your items must be available for purchase through eBay.com. Of course, you may only use the Global Shipping Program to sell items that are eligible and are sold in categories that are supported by the Global Shipping Program; sellers who sell items that are considered hazardous or subject to special export restrictions, as well as items prohibited for sale by eBay, cannot participate in the Global Shipping Program.
The requirements that determine what you can ship and where you can ship it to change in accordance with an item’s dimensions and its destination, which is why it is advised to take a moment to consider if the eBay Global Shipping Program is a good fit for your store and the items you’re selling. If you exclusively sell items that exceed the dimensions outlined by eBay’s Global Shipping Program guidelines, then the Global Shipping Program may not be the best choice for you.
Finally, you can only qualify for the Global Shipping Program if you accept eBay Managed Payments exclusively in the respective listing.
How to Use the eBay Global Shipping Program
Countries Participating in the eBay Global Shipping Program
You’ll be able to open shipping to the following countries (listed in alphabetical order) when you choose to participate in the Global Shipping Program:
Antigua and Barbuda, Aruba, Australia, Austria, Bahamas, Bahrain, Bahrain, Bangladesh, Barbados, Belgium, Belize, Bermuda, Bolivia, Brazil, Brunei Darussalam, Bulgaria, Cambodia, Canada, Cayman Islands, Chile, China, Colombia, Costa Rica, Croatia, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Dominica, Dominican Republic, Ecuador, Egypt, El Salvador, Estonia, Finland, France, French Guiana, Germany, Gibraltar, Greece, Grenada, Guadeloupe (French), Guatemala, Guernsey, Honduras, Hong Kong, Hungary, Iceland, Indonesia, Ireland, Israel, Italy, Jamaica, Japan, Jersey, Jordan, Kuwait, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Macau, Malaysia, Maldives, Malta, Martinique (French), Mexico, Monaco, Montserrat, Netherlands, New Zealand, Nicaragua, Norway, Oman, Pakistan, Panama, Paraguay, Peru, Philippines, Poland, Portugal, Qatar, Reunion (French), Romania, Saint Kitts and Nevis, Saint Lucia, Saudi Arabia, Singapore, Slovakia, Slovenia, South Africa, South Korea, Spain, Sri Lanka, Sweden, Switzerland, Taiwan, Thailand, Trinidad and Tobago, Turks and Caicos Islands, Ukraine, United Arab Emirates, United Kingdom, and Vietnam.
How does the eBay Global Shipping Program send and track items?
When you ship your items internationally using the Global Shipping Program, your buyers can track their order every step of the way. You will need to provide tracking information for the order when it ships from you to the domestic shipping center, and eBay will provide tracking from their Global Shipping Program domestic shipping center to the buyer. If you use eBay to create a shipping label to send the order to the domestic shipping center, the tracking number will automatically be updated.
What is the process for returning an item shipped through the Global Shipping Program?
The eBay Global Shipping program does not facilitate returns, so any return requests you receive will need to be handled directly with the buyer. Depending on the reason for return, you may be liable for return shipping costs, which is an important consideration when trying to understand if the Global Shipping Program is a good fit for your business.
eBay Global Shipping Program: Issues and Problems
For some sellers, the eBay Global Shipping Program poses several challenges that could potentially make it the wrong choice for their business. It may be a great fit for some sellers, but for others it can be more hassle than it’s worth, and even prove to be more costly than shipping internationally yourself! Carefully consider whether the items you wish to sell are a good fit for the Global Shipping Program. For example, sellers who sell handmade jewelry may find the Global Shipping Program less beneficial than sellers who specialize in selling costume jewelry, simply because they won’t be able to keep up with the handling times necessary to reap the detailed seller rating benefits. Additionally, the shipping costs can sometimes be more expensive through the Global Shipping Program when compared to shipping the item yourself, and this is especially true for small, lightweight items.
What are the costs associated with the eBay Global Shipping Program?
Joining the eBay Global Shipping program is free, and costs are calculated on a per-order basis based on the item that was sold, the method of domestic shipping, the destination country, and associated international shipping fees (such as customs and taxes). Furthermore, your orders are still subject to all the standard eBay selling fees.
The eBay Global Shipping Program: Pros and Cons
eBay Global Shipping Program Pros
As a seller, there are many benefits to working with the Global Shipping Program. The main ones are:
- It’s a safer way to sell internationally. You get to take full advantage of eBay’s logistical expertise when it comes to international shipping, and leave the hard part to the pros. Plus, you’re completely protected if something goes wrong.
- Less paperwork and bureaucracy for you. You can continue selling and shipping just as you’ve been doing, because all the shipments you send out are still domestic shipments. No dealing with customs forms, export declarations, and other hassles of selling and shipping internationally.
- More potential customers around the globe. You’re instantly growing your customer base by 60 million buyers when you open up your listings to international customers with the Global Shipping Program.
eBay Global Shipping Program Cons
With all its perks, however, the Global Shipping Program does have some downsides:
- No support for buyer returns. You may not need to deal with shipping an item out to an international buyer, but you may very well need to find a way to facilitate a return. This could end up being very costly for you, and you may find that it’s not worth the hassle.
- Not suitable for larger items. If you sell very large items that regularly exceed the dimensions outlined by eBay for each country, your items will not be eligible for shipping through the Global Shipping Program.
- It could end up costing you more. If you’re selling small and lightweight items, you may find that international shipping with eBay’s Global Shipping program is vastly more expensive than shipping the items internationally yourself.
Tips for using the eBay Global Shipping Program
Before diving head first into the Global Shipping Program, consider a few things: do you want to sell internationally? Selling internationally means selling to buyers from all around the world, with everything that that entails – language barriers, time zone differences, and more complex returns, to name a few.
If you decide that you do, consider which items you want to make eligible. The Global Shipping Program may be good for some items, but not for others.
Finally, take full advantage of the customization that the Global Shipping Program provides. Decide exactly which countries you want to ship to, both with and without the Global Shipping Program, and do your due diligence on shipping to these countries ahead of time.
The eBay Global Shipping Program: Is It Worth It?
The eBay Global Shipping Program can be a great choice for eBay sellers, but you’ll need to do your homework to find out if it could be worthwhile for you. For sellers who think that expanding internationally is the right way to grow their business, the eBay Global Shipping Program is an easy and safe way to get their foot in the door, but for sellers who primarily sell in unsupported categories, the Global Shipping Program may prove more hassle than it’s worth. Do your research ahead of time, and decide for yourself whether eBay’s Global Shipping Program is the correct choice for your ecommerce business.