eBay are expanding their global shipping program in the UK. Currently countries in Europe (Belgium, Denmark, France, Germany, Ireland, Italy, Luxembourg, Netherlands, Portugal, Spain and Sweden) have been able to buy from the UK using the program. This will be expanded to include the USA, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, China, Japan, Brazil & Russia.
The is designed for sellers who haven’t yet decided to embrace cross border trade. There may be many reason for this, for example private sellers may not wish to figure out international postage rates or small business sellers may not have the volume required to negotiate reasonable international courier contracts. It may simply be that you don’t want to list on overseas sites as you don’t have the translation skills.
The Global shipping program won’t give you the same exposure as actively listing on overseas eBay sites, but is similar to passively adding international shipping to your eBay UK listings. It will make it easy for customers overseas to still purchase your products without you having to do a thing.
Once in the program you can still opt out if you wish, either entirely or you can exclude certain countries (for instance if the products you sell are banned in certain territories you’ll want to block them from buying). When something sells you merely ship to eBay’s UK shipping centre and they then forward on the parcel to the international destination.
So long as you ship same day or next day, mark the item as despatched, upload a tracking number if you have one and the item arrives at the shipping centre within three days you’re covered. You’ll get five stars for despatch time, five stars if you offered free postage for shipping costs and it’s not your problem if the parcel gets lost or damaged on the International leg of it’s journey. You’re also protected from Negative or Neutral feedback for any shipping delays or damage in transit.
You can opt in and offer the Global Shipping Programme on all your active eligible listings, or you can opt in an apply to specific listings on an individual basis. Either way, if it gets you more sales in the run up to Christmas it’s hard to see why you wouldn’t want to try it.