How to Ship to Europe: A Detailed Guide for eCommerce Merchants

Vanessa Tran , Apr 01 2021

Europe's bustling economy provides a business hub for many international eCommerce businesses that need to frequently ship to countries like the UK, France, and Germany. With a combined $390 million of revenue for companies providing eCommerce services to Europe, it offers an ample opportunity for merchants to gain a competitive piece of the market. 

Your shipping strategy can make all the difference to customers looking to check out on your site. Shipping expenses can make them quickly abandon carts and look elsewhere for items. However, when offering affordable or free shipping to Europe and speedy delivery from the United States to Europe, your eCommerce business will simultaneously increase sales and customer satisfaction.

Business owners do need to understand that shipping to Europe will present some challenges. By reading this guide, you will find helpful information on shipping to European countries in the fastest, cost-effective, and most consistent ways possible. 


With this guide, you will learn: 

  • What you should know about shipping to Europe.
  • The best services to send packages to Europe. 
  • Tips, tricks, and common mistakes.
  • Why Parcll gets your packages to customers more efficiently.


Related: Ecommerce Shipping: Your Step-By-Step Guide To Shipping


Things You Should Know About Shipping to Europe


Europe is a considerable shipping zone that covers 44 different countries. Learning how to save on shipping costs will be vital for your cross-border business. The time and cost to ship to foreign countries will vary depending on where the parcel is heading. The main factors affecting your shipping costs will be: 


  • The final destination of the package 
  • The dimensions and weight of the package 
  • And how fast it will need to arrive 


Europe has well-established shipping routes and links that enable packages to be delivered from the US with expedited shipping in about 1-3 days. With standard or economy options, this can be extended by 9-15 days. 


Want the most efficient shipping option to Europe? Save time and money with Parcll services with access to the largest B2C delivery network in Europe and 2,000,000 deliveries in the EU every week! 


Woman shipping packages


What is the Best Way to Ship to Europe From the United States?


Ecommerce merchants should always look for the best shipping options to boost delivery times while getting the best prices possible. Companies like Parcll have Delivered Duty Paid shipping services that provide international eCommerce sellers huge benefits. 

Delivered Duty Paid (DDP) is a modern solution to shipping that differs from shipping with postal carriers such as USPS that hand your parcels off to the destination postal organization, which will then accrue fees like Value Added Tax, Duty, and clearance fees to the consumer. DDP allows for extra benefits like:


  • No consumer rejections or complaints for customs charges and positive feedback from customers
  • No unforeseen costs to your eCommerce business 
  • Delivery to the consumer's door by local carriers
  • No unexpected delays


Parcll is a DDP specialist that is one of the most dependable and best ways to ship to Europe while ensuring happy customers and more transparent shipping rates for all. 


Related: Cross-Border E-Commerce Pain Points


5 Tips and Best-Practices While Shipping to Europe


Ensuring you have the best shipping provider and rates possible is essential to running an efficient eCommerce business. Still, there are other considerations for shipping that can make a big difference. 

To have a stable and growing customer base in Europe, it is essential to implement shipping best-practices and avoiding any mistakes with the tips below: 


1) Know the Difference Between EU Countries - With 44 countries in Europe that can have their own ways of processing shipping, it is important to note any other documentation you will need. Areas such as the Vatican, Gibraltar, and the Channel Islands will require some extra steps to get your packages processed. 

2) Understand Duty, Customs, and Taxes - Researching the various regulations and requirements for shipping to different countries and areas will help you immensely as an eCommerce merchant. Extra duties and taxes can be applicable when sending particular products to European customers. When you have a grasp of these, you can make decisions like who will be paying for these fees. Keep in mind that the lower your consumers' rates are for shipping, the more likely they are to buy from your business. 

3) Ensure Packages Are Labeled and Addressed Properly - When you address packages bound for Europe, be sure to select the proper name of the destination country such as Northern Ireland or to the United Kingdom, England. Double-check that addresses are consistent to avoid any confusion that can lead to costly and time-consuming delays in delivery. 

4) Note COVID-19 Delays - Ensure that you and your customers are aware of the effects that the pandemic can have on shipping. Some routes and services will be greatly delayed due to health concerns, so redirecting shipping may be necessary.

5) Other Shipping Restrictions - Europe will have some restrictions that may differ from shipping within the United States. There are also general international shipping restrictions you should be aware of. This will also vary from country to country, so be sure that you recognize all of these restrictions and banned items such as rough diamonds, items that contain mercury or other dangerous chemicals, and more. 


Want to partner with well-established European shipping experts? Parcll is home to 10,000 clients that trust in our superior eCommerce shipping services. See how we can help you.


Stacked packages


Choosing Parcll for Shipping to Europe 


Choosing Parcll for all your needs when shipping to Europe will eliminate the headaches and stress associated with keeping track of the various regulations, fees, and documentation you will need when shipping. Parcll's European network of direct contracts and partners like DHL, Royal Mail, Hermes, Poste Italiane, GLS, and more ensure that your packages will arrive safely and quickly. 

Parcll conducts all shipping operations internally with tracking available every step of the way. Parcll ground teams in countries spanning the UK, Germany, Netherlands, Spain, Italy, France, and many more will ensure that all packages are reliably handled, delivered, or returned. 

Related: How To Be A Successful International E-Commerce Brand

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