Cross-border e-commerce is opening up opportunities for for companies of all sizes. International e-commerce offers companies an opportunity to achieve growth by seizing opportunities abroad. Canadian companies are seeking opportunities beyond the USA duty via direct import to global buyers.


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Ship from Canada

Things to consider for cross border e-commerce from Canada

1. E-commerce is opening up global opportunity for companies of all sizes

Small companies are accessing international trade like never before. Via Shopify and other "direct to consumer" platforms, Canadian sellers can integrate their offer for international buyers.

Research shows that small companies who sell internationally are more likely to survive than those that only serve a local market.


2. Canadian Origin Goods Often Qualify for Duty Free Access
Canada has trade agreements with most of the world's leading economies that give preferential duty free access for goods made in Canada.

Most Favoured Nation (MFN) tariff rates are generally applicable for good traded between Canada and their trading partners.Goods that meet the rules of origin of a free trade agreement can benefit from preferential duty free import. The MFN tariff rates of Canada and major economies apply to goods that do not meet the rules of origin (non-originating goods) and/or with countries that do not have a free trade agreement with Canada.

Canadian sellers can benefit from online duty free import of to Europe (CETA), the UK (UKTCA) and Japan (CPTPP).

quebec to france e-commerce direct presentation

An important point - especially when shipping to European Union countries and the UK is that all sales - even those that otherwise qualify for duty fee, are subject to payment of VAT. Both the UK and EU mandate that marketplaces or - if the seller is not using a marketplace - the seller them self are responsible for collection and payment of VAT.

3. Shipping is the key for International Sales

Studies consistently show that fast transit times are not a major concern for most e-commerce shoppers. Delivery within a week or so is generally the accepted standard for most buyers (according to leading research). And cost, as always, is critically important. Reliable delivery is more important than fast delivery. Most important: Do not over promise when it comes to delivery time.

The three main shipping options for cross border e-commerce options are:

  • Integrators (DHL, FedEx, UPS)
  • Postal delivery
  • Sending parcels directly to the destination country for clearance and local delivery

Jet Worldwide provides shipping solutions direct from Canada to the UK, European Union, Japan,  China and most of the world's leading economies and regions (including the Caribbean and South America).

quebec to france e-commerce direct presentation

4. Rest of the World is Where the Opportunity Rests

For many Canadian sellers, international simply means shipping to the USA. Cross border solutions are readily available via Canada Post, UPS and FedEx. However, the greatest opportunity is to Europe, the UK, Japan and China. Jet Worldwide helps Canadian sellers reach global markets by shipping directly.

5. Larger opportunities may be in the world's smallest economies

Selling to the largest markets (namely The USA, UK, Germany, France and China) certainly offer the most opportunity, they also have the largest competition. Beyond searching for ways to differentiate your offer, we recommend cross border e-commerce merchants look to smaller and/or less developed markets. It may turn out that The UAE, Trinidad or Poland - for example - are a smarter choice for you than France or Germany.

Jet Worldwide has partnered with e-commerce forwarder, eZone, who provides reliable low cost access to over 25 countries. eZone offers logistics processes for US and European e-commerce to reach international markets.

About Jet Worldwide:

  • Jet Worldwide is a trusted brand for over 40 years.
  • Jet Worldwide provides options for international shipping from Canada for online orders.

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Written by Timothy Byrnes