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  • International Shipping

    I wanted to put this out there for other merchants thinking about shipping internationally.

    I've been wanting to sell internationally since we began selling online in 2004. We sell electronics, so figuring out what products are restricted in which countries, accurately calculating duties & taxes, being able to accept payment in other currencies, etc.. really dissuaded me from attempting it.

    We decided to try this year. I started out with one of the pre-integrated solutions compatible with 3dCart, and while the integration was very good, the shipping costs to the end user were so prohibitively high that I wasn't getting any business.

    After trying it out for 2 months and having one sale, I switched over to Bongo International. What a difference! Instead of charging a % of the product price and adding that as a handling fee, Bongo is able to keep prices down by leveraging the cost savings with their negotiated rates. The integration is seamless between 3dCart and Bongo (it wasn't always, but they worked it out).

    I'm happy to say after 6 months, we've had 18 international orders and not ONE problem. They classify your products for you so you don't have to worry about export restrictions. They handle all fraud screening and credit card processing with zero risk to the merchant. The order comes in, you ship to their hub, they re-pack it, complete all of the export documentation and forward it to the customer.

    There were some kinks to work out at first, but their people were so responsive and stayed on top of every issue I brought up until it was resolved.

    I can't recommend them enough.
    Chris
    TC Life Safety
    TC Wireless

  • #2
    Originally posted by tclifesafety View Post
    I wanted to put this out there for other merchants thinking about shipping internationally.

    I've been wanting to sell internationally since we began selling online in 2004. We sell electronics, so figuring out what products are restricted in which countries, accurately calculating duties & taxes, being able to accept payment in other currencies, etc.. really dissuaded me from attempting it.

    We decided to try this year. I started out with one of the pre-integrated solutions compatible with 3dCart, and while the integration was very good, the shipping costs to the end user were so prohibitively high that I wasn't getting any business.

    After trying it out for 2 months and having one sale, I switched over to Bongo International. What a difference! Instead of charging a % of the product price and adding that as a handling fee, Bongo is able to keep prices down by leveraging the cost savings with their negotiated rates. The integration is seamless between 3dCart and Bongo (it wasn't always, but they worked it out).

    I'm happy to say after 6 months, we've had 18 international orders and not ONE problem. They classify your products for you so you don't have to worry about export restrictions. They handle all fraud screening and credit card processing with zero risk to the merchant. The order comes in, you ship to their hub, they re-pack it, complete all of the export documentation and forward it to the customer.

    There were some kinks to work out at first, but their people were so responsive and stayed on top of every issue I brought up until it was resolved.

    I can't recommend them enough.
    ditto!
    We have been with Bongo for quite sometime now. We've been shipping internationally via Bongo very happily and efficiently even prior to them introducing the BongoCheckout. Most items are delivered any where in the world average 3 days.
    Elegant Weddings +
    www.elegantweddingsplus.ca
    www.elegantweddingsplus.com

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    • #3
      Bongo Checkout

      We had inquiries from customers overseas regarding purchasing shoes from our website, oasisshoe.com. It was virtually impossible for us to quote shipping and import duty costs and we had given up on the idea of shipping overseas until 3D Cart partnered with Bongo. Now we’re using Bongo Checkout. Getting up and running with Bongo Checkout could not have been any easier. Orders come in just like domestic orders and we don’t even have to think about it – just ship the order to Bongo and they take care of the rest. Duty restrictions still make it difficult to ship footwear to some countries but for countries with reasonable tariffs on footwear the total cost to our customers is very reasonable. If we tried to ship orders overseas ourselves the costs would be much higher, not to mention the hassle. It has really been a pleasure working with the people at Bongo.

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      • #4
        Originally posted by Barryh View Post
        We had inquiries from customers overseas regarding purchasing shoes from our website, oasisshoe.com. It was virtually impossible for us to quote shipping and import duty costs and we had given up on the idea of shipping overseas until 3D Cart partnered with Bongo. Now we’re using Bongo Checkout. Getting up and running with Bongo Checkout could not have been any easier. Orders come in just like domestic orders and we don’t even have to think about it – just ship the order to Bongo and they take care of the rest. Duty restrictions still make it difficult to ship footwear to some countries but for countries with reasonable tariffs on footwear the total cost to our customers is very reasonable. If we tried to ship orders overseas ourselves the costs would be much higher, not to mention the hassle. It has really been a pleasure working with the people at Bongo.
        We too recently made the switch. Bongo has been great to work with and the orders are flowing in to our system like any other orders.

        Customers are getting their packages very quickly since Bongo is in CT, and most of our stuff ships out of the northeast. In some instances, people get them within 7 business days.

        The tariffs/customs have not been bad, and we've had several sales over $1,000.

        I'd recommend adding them if you're looking for a good solution for your international orders.

        Dave

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        • #5
          We ship about 10-30 international orders per month and have had no problem doing it the "old fashioned way", by printing postage and customs forms with Stamps.com. We don't try to quote customers a price for duties because that is not our responsibility. I haven't seen an advantage to a third party service yet, especially with our slim margins.

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          • #6
            I ship Internationally the "old fashioned way" as well, my customers normally have their shipments in 6-10 business days, but I'm fortunate in that I ship most flat rate so they know what the shipping costs will be and my customers seem to know also what their duty will be based on the price of the item.

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            • #7
              We just set up International Checkout (IC) but experience a huge letdown as the plug-in does not pass Coupons (Promotional Discounts) to the IC Cart. This is an acknowledged limitation that so far can only by corrected by us paying for custom programming to 3dCart anywhere $500 or up.

              We depend heavily on occasional promotions, so would be very interested if indeed the Bongo plugin does pass the Coupons/Discounts. Can any of the users confirm this?

              Thanks!

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              • #8
                I was curious (never had this come up), so I created a coupon, applied it and started checkout. It did not apply the discount when the order transferred to Bongo. You might contact Bongo and request that they include that in the implementation - I've found them to be very responsive to my requests.
                Chris
                TC Life Safety
                TC Wireless

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                • #9
                  Hello all.
                  My two cents....

                  We had Bongo for quite some time.
                  Our customer were never able to calculate their shipping and were also turned off by having to set up an account.

                  We were turned off by Bongo's lack of support.
                  We could never get them on the phone.

                  We recently switched to IC (International Checkout).
                  They were really helpful and setup was a breeze.
                  Our customers no longer have to email us for a shipping quote.

                  However, according to our customers, shipping is quite high.
                  I tend to agree, but at least there is no need to set up an account to get a quote and get some help.

                  As far shipping prices on Bongo vs IC, we have no way to compare, getting a quote from Bongo was nearly impossible for us just like the customers.

                  One thing, though, IC has a merchant directory which may help your sales and SEO.
                  Unfortunately, we were not able to be listed on the directory due to some of our "Adult Items".

                  Best regards,
                  papa

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                  • #10
                    Hi all,

                    We have used a while back a company that approves all international orders they are called efraudsecurity.com they guarantee and fully insure all approved transactions.

                    They really did an amazing job when we had to use them for a project.

                    Good Luck,

                    Jimmy

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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by tclifesafety View Post
                      I was curious (never had this come up), so I created a coupon, applied it and started checkout. It did not apply the discount when the order transferred to Bongo. You might contact Bongo and request that they include that in the implementation - I've found them to be very responsive to my requests.
                      First my apologies, I was under the impression I would be notified on any replies but on the contrary have to use the Search feature even to locate my own post. Strange.

                      That aside, thanks Chris for trying that out. It may well turn out though the same situation as with IC, who consider it 3dCart's responsibility to upgrade their plugin, or alternatively pay for it myself. I experience IC helpful and responsive but don't see why they can't work this out with 3dCart to the benefit of all their combined users at once.

                      I even suggested to take in the int'l orders myself and then place them at the IC cart (using customer's shipping info) but then I'd need insight into their shipping fees, which they won't give.

                      For us coupons are essential, I will follow your advice and check with Bongo.

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                      • #12
                        good luck, and let us know what you hear back from bongo. i agree passing coupons is an important feature that should be available.
                        Chris
                        TC Life Safety
                        TC Wireless

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