For business owners, there is nothing more exciting (and therefore anxiety-inducing) than deciding to start importing or exporting to a new international market through online freight services. Despite the significant potential benefits, opening yourself up to a new region is not a decision that should be taken lightly.
With today’s technology, there is no reason why all sizes of businesses can’t be shipping to and from China. Unfortunately, too many firms don’t know what they are doing, and so they set themselves up for failure.
There is certainly no need for you to be one of them. From correct documentation to lowering shipping costs, from being efficient to having a reliable partner, read on..
Five reasons you should use online freight services when importing or exporting to China.
Table of Contents
- Five reasons you should use online freight services when importing or exporting to China.
1. Confident that your documentation is correct
One of the most challenging aspects of starting to import or export to China is ensuring that you have all the right documentation. As every country has different entry requirements, it can be a struggle to know what you need to provide and when you need to show it.
For example, to import into China, you will need a China Compulsory Certificate (CCC), accurate HS codes, GB standards test reports, a bill of lading, a commercial invoice, a packing list, a customs invoice, a sales/trading contract, an import quota certificate, and an H2000 Customs declaration. In some cases, you may also be required to show inspection certificates or licenses, quality certificates, and health and safety paperwork.
This is a headache for any business owner, especially when you already have so much on your plate. Therefore, it is highly recommended that you choose to work with online freight service providers who will support you in classifying and complying with all the necessary documents.
2. Determine the appropriate shipping method for your goods
Another major issue for businesses that want to start shipping to or from China is knowing what type of freight is right for them. Usually, the answer depends on where your goods are located and the variety of products you will be moving.
For example, ocean routes are heavily used for intra-Asia shipping, as it doesn’t take very long for these journeys to be completed. To give you an idea, Xiamen (China) to Ho Chi Minh City (Vietnam) takes three days, while Nagoya (Japan) to Xiamen (China) takes five days. However, ocean routes between China and the Americas take significantly longer. Going from Ningbo (China) to Rio de Janeiro (Brazil) or Boston (USA) to Shanghai (China) can take approximately 30 days.
Therefore, many companies that are transporting goods between China and the Americas or Europe opt to use air freight. While these routes are significantly more expensive, they also dramatically cut down the waiting time. Shanghai (China) to Chicago (USA) has a flight time of almost 13 hours, while Frankfurt (Germany) to Guangzhou (China) takes just under 11 hours.
Generally, luxury items and perishables have to be sent by air freight, but the rest of the time, it depends on your shipping strategy and the promises you made to your customers. To ensure you know all your options, speak with an online freight service that will help you ascertain the right shipping strategy for you. Plus, you will then be able to right away book freight online.
3. Assured that your shipping process is efficient
By choosing to use online freight services, you are electing to make your global shipping process as efficient as possible for everyone involved. The best online shipment platforms offer everything you need to organize your freight so that you can feel in control throughout every step of the journey. From the moment you receive a quote to when you are tracking the status of your freight (as well as booking and paying for your shipment), these services are there to make everything streamlined.
No matter what size your business is, this is a significant benefit. Previously, it was challenging for small and medium-sized enterprises to achieve (and sustain) a position in the global economy. However, the efficiency that is provided through online freight services means that these companies can experience international growth. If you are looking to start exporting or importing to China, you want to be utilizing this technology to ensure you are removing all the obstacles that stand in your way.
4. Benefit from their relationships with carriers
For many businesses, one of the main pain points when it comes to importing or exporting is the cost. After all, in order to have a competitive advantage, you need to keep your shipping costs down. Unfortunately, too many companies are unable to find a way to do this, and they lose out on the opportunity to grow internationally.
Your company doesn’t have to be the same. Instead, you can benefit from the experience and expertise that a reputable online freight forwarding service has. The best services have relationships with carriers, which enables them to negotiate for you competitive shipping rates. This is an excellent way to ensure you are getting the best shipping costs available and keeping your costs low.
5. Have a partner
There is no reason to dive into importing and exporting on your own, particularly when there are online freight services that are eager to work with you to ensure it is a successful venture. When searching for an online freight service to help you import or export your goods to or from China, make sure you choose one that understands the importance of professional, reliable, fast shipping for business success.
By working with an online freight company that values you and your business, you can be assured that you have a trustworthy partner through the next stage of your company’s expansion.
Has your business considered importing or exporting to China? Why or why not? Do you ship anywhere else internationally? If so, what advice do you have for other business owners who are looking to expand their market? Let us know in the comments below!
Author Bio: Paul Rehmet is the Chief Product Officer for Shipa Freight. He is responsible for translating the company’s vision into an easy-to-use online freight platform for its customers. In his 25-year career, Paul has held various technology leadership positions with early-stage startups and Fortune 500 companies including Unisys, Destiny Web Solutions, and US Airways.