Entrepreneurship & Small Business

Small Canada eCommerce Biz US Shipping

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  • Feb 15th, 2020 11:50 am
[OP]
Sr. Member
Feb 13, 2015
953 posts
143 upvotes
Oakville, ON

Small Canada eCommerce Biz US Shipping

Hey everyone,

Im starting my own brand and ecommerce shopify store in a bit. I would love to hear your feedback and suggestions.

What is the best and cheapest shipping option for me to ship my products to US Customers?

I’ve done a little bit of research I understand there are services such as cross border shipping? Where the company comes and picks up your products and then drives across the border themselves

Are there any alternatives? Down the road im assuming if it scales then I should set up a hub in the US and have it distributed there but thats a bit farfetched as I am small right now. I would love to hear everyones experience and suggestions!
15 replies
Deal Guru
User avatar
Aug 2, 2010
14958 posts
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Here 'n There
chitchats.com. You can print off the labels at home on their website. As you are in Oakville you can use the Burlington drop-off location or the Mississauga full-service location. I've been using them for years and have nothing but good things to say about them. You cannot beat their pricing and service.
Einstein: Imagination is more important than knowledge.

Economists have predicted 18 of the last 4 recessions

S&P500 Annual Returns (not inflation adj'd, divs reinvested) by Yr/%: 5/11.29, 10/13.31, 15/8.89, 20/6.06, 30/9.90, 40/11.69, 50/10.5
[OP]
Sr. Member
Feb 13, 2015
953 posts
143 upvotes
Oakville, ON
eonibm wrote: chitchats.com. You can print off the labels at home on their website. As you are in Oakville you can use the Burlington drop-off location or the Mississauga full-service location. I've been using them for years and have nothing but good things to say about them. You cannot beat their pricing and service.
Thanks for the suggestion, still 30 minutes away from me which Im not sure if its worth it if I have to make regular trips there. Its odd that shipping to US is cheaper than to Canada? unless I read it wrong
Deal Guru
User avatar
Aug 2, 2010
14958 posts
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Here 'n There
th12mq wrote: Thanks for the suggestion, still 30 minutes away from me which Im not sure if its worth it if I have to make regular trips there. Its odd that shipping to US is cheaper than to Canada? unless I read it wrong
You are right. Shipping to the US via USPS is way cheaper than the same distance, weight and package size in Canada. Perhaps it is something to do with economies of scale as Canada has about 1/10th the population of the US but is a larger country.

For me, being able to ship some parts from Canada to my US customers USPS is a real advantage both cost wise and logistically vs having to do customs documentation and sending it UPS, Fedex or Canada Post, so it is worth the trip. You could always just go twice a week instead of every day. You have to do your own cost/benefit analysis.
Einstein: Imagination is more important than knowledge.

Economists have predicted 18 of the last 4 recessions

S&P500 Annual Returns (not inflation adj'd, divs reinvested) by Yr/%: 5/11.29, 10/13.31, 15/8.89, 20/6.06, 30/9.90, 40/11.69, 50/10.5
[OP]
Sr. Member
Feb 13, 2015
953 posts
143 upvotes
Oakville, ON
eonibm wrote: You are right. Shipping to the US via USPS is way cheaper than the same distance, weight and package size in Canada. Perhaps it is something to do with economies of scale as Canada has about 1/10th the population of the US but is a larger country.

For me, being able to ship some parts from Canada to my US customers USPS is a real advantage both cost wise and logistically vs having to do customs documentation and sending it UPS, Fedex or Canada Post, so it is worth the trip. You could always just go twice a week instead of every day. You have to do your own cost/benefit analysis.
I appreciate the insight, will definetly keep in mind as it is a good starting point. Hoping to look into look for more options !
Deal Guru
User avatar
Aug 2, 2010
14958 posts
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Here 'n There
th12mq wrote: I appreciate the insight, will definetly keep in mind as it is a good starting point. Hoping to look into look for more options !
I have canvassed all of the other options over the years and have yet to find a better one but if you find one please do post.
Einstein: Imagination is more important than knowledge.

Economists have predicted 18 of the last 4 recessions

S&P500 Annual Returns (not inflation adj'd, divs reinvested) by Yr/%: 5/11.29, 10/13.31, 15/8.89, 20/6.06, 30/9.90, 40/11.69, 50/10.5
[OP]
Sr. Member
Feb 13, 2015
953 posts
143 upvotes
Oakville, ON
eonibm wrote: I have canvassed all of the other options over the years and have yet to find a better one but if you find one please do post.
Absolutely, Ive heard some companies have set up meetings directly with UPS and negotiated. However, im assuming that largely has to do with the volume of shipments they are doing
Deal Addict
Dec 23, 2006
1223 posts
102 upvotes
+1 for chit chats. I too just started an online Shopify store and they have been a blessing to deal with for US orders. Even tho I am new to all this, my plan is to use chit chat for all US orders and use Canada Post for Canada orders

Side note: any tips and tricks for a newbie starting in ecommerce?
[OP]
Sr. Member
Feb 13, 2015
953 posts
143 upvotes
Oakville, ON
o1Jeff wrote: +1 for chit chats. I too just started an online Shopify store and they have been a blessing to deal with for US orders. Even tho I am new to all this, my plan is to use chit chat for all US orders and use Canada Post for Canada orders

Side note: any tips and tricks for a newbie starting in ecommerce?
Thats awesome to hear and someone else to vouch for them. What do you sell and what is your business? Send me a DM if you want to keep it private and I can provide you some insight on my behalf !
Deal Guru
User avatar
Aug 2, 2010
14958 posts
4538 upvotes
Here 'n There
th12mq wrote: Absolutely, Ive heard some companies have set up meetings directly with UPS and negotiated. However, im assuming that largely has to do with the volume of shipments they are doing
You would have to have HUGE volume to get a deal out of UPS. Chit chats no volume pricing is lower than UPS's. However, what is also an issue is that it's a bit more work to do the UPS labels than with Chitchat. Also, since I have a US website and US location then for the customers where I ship the goods from Canada it looks like it's being shipped from the US and that is a marketing benefit.
Last edited by eonibm on Feb 10th, 2020 10:25 am, edited 2 times in total.
Einstein: Imagination is more important than knowledge.

Economists have predicted 18 of the last 4 recessions

S&P500 Annual Returns (not inflation adj'd, divs reinvested) by Yr/%: 5/11.29, 10/13.31, 15/8.89, 20/6.06, 30/9.90, 40/11.69, 50/10.5
[OP]
Sr. Member
Feb 13, 2015
953 posts
143 upvotes
Oakville, ON
eonibm wrote: You would have to have HUGE volume to get a deal out of UPS. Chit chats no volume pricing is lower than UPS's. However, what is also an issue is that you it's a bit more work to do the UPS labels that Chitchat. Also, since I have a US website and US location then for the customers where I ship the goods from Canada it looks like it's being shipped from the US and that is a marketing benefit.
Little confused with what you are saying here, grammatical errors haha
Deal Guru
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Aug 2, 2010
14958 posts
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Here 'n There
th12mq wrote: Little confused with what you are saying here, grammatical errors haha
Actually it was typos (was doin it on an iPhone) but not sure it was that hard to figure out, lol. Scroll back as I corrected the one sentence you found very difficult to decipher.
Einstein: Imagination is more important than knowledge.

Economists have predicted 18 of the last 4 recessions

S&P500 Annual Returns (not inflation adj'd, divs reinvested) by Yr/%: 5/11.29, 10/13.31, 15/8.89, 20/6.06, 30/9.90, 40/11.69, 50/10.5
[OP]
Sr. Member
Feb 13, 2015
953 posts
143 upvotes
Oakville, ON
eonibm wrote: Actually it was typos (was doin it on an iPhone) but not sure it was that hard to figure out, lol. Scroll back as I corrected the one sentence you found very difficult to decipher.
Have you ever looked into setting up or having inventory and distributed straight from US ? Or are you still too small for that
Deal Guru
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Aug 2, 2010
14958 posts
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Here 'n There
Yes, as I mentioned in my post, I have a US location. I ship a small percentage of my more complicated products from Canada as I would rather not have my logistics warehouse handle them.
Einstein: Imagination is more important than knowledge.

Economists have predicted 18 of the last 4 recessions

S&P500 Annual Returns (not inflation adj'd, divs reinvested) by Yr/%: 5/11.29, 10/13.31, 15/8.89, 20/6.06, 30/9.90, 40/11.69, 50/10.5
[OP]
Sr. Member
Feb 13, 2015
953 posts
143 upvotes
Oakville, ON
eonibm wrote: Yes, as I mentioned in my post, I have a US location. I ship a small percentage of my more complicated products from Canada as I would rather not have my logistics warehouse handle them.
Do you have any experience with receiving shipments from overseas? E.g. using brokers, freightforwarding

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