Exporters and domestic traders must be aware of the demands that shipping puts on packaged goods. It is especially important to keep in mind four potential challenges when packaging and shipping your goods: weight, breakage, moisture, and pilferage.
Challenges When Shipping Goods
Weight and breakage typically go hand in hand. Shipped goods are generally carried in containers, though some special goods are shipped as break bulk cargo. Most goods are likely to be stacked on top of each other for transport. The extra weight creates a higher risk of breakage. Goods may also break due to harsh handling, such as dragging, pushing, or dropping during unloading.
Another imminent threat is moisture, especially due to condensation. Cargo may be unloaded in precipitation, or the foreign port may lack covered storage facilities.
Finally, theft and pilferage are ever-present concerns. According to the National Cargo Security Council, stolen and lost cargo costs shippers $50 billion annually. Any merchant who wants to be successful while shipping in 2021 must find ways to address these four challenges. The following five tips for domestic and export packaging and shipping are a great starting point.
1. Carefully assess your packaging needs
Primarily, shipment goods are packaged to protect the products inside. The packaging helps keep the products safe during shipment and also prevents damage while the product sits on the shelf. Therefore, the goal is to find a reliable packaging solution that protects your products and meets regulations. You can always package the products on your own. However, if you’re not confident in your packaging skills, you may want to consider outsourcing the task.
2. Choose the right packaging solution
If you outsource the task, the third party, will know the best packaging solution for your products based on previous experience. If you prefer to do it in-house, remember that you need to consider three main factors when choosing shipment packaging: material, strength, and size. Always look for manufacturer stamps to find out about the material quality, size, and strength of the packaging.
3. Pack your items properly
There’s no one-size-fits-all approach for shipment packaging. However, following a few best practices can go a long way. Firstly, you should never leave any empty spaces inside the box. Empty spaces allow contents to move during transit, which can cause damage to the contents and the box. Secondly, always place items to be shipped in the center of the box, at least 6cm from the box’s walls. Finally, use packaging materials to wrap and secure the product. Also consider using dividers to ship more than one item in a larger product.
4. Protect with a secure seal
Sealing the shipment box protects your products from weather damage (including moisture) and prevents the loss of goods during transit. Therefore, you should choose reliable sealing materials and sealing techniques.
5. Always label your shipments
The shipping label clearly indicates the package’s contents, who the sender is, and the receiver’s address. This information is crucial as it tells the logistics service providers and customs staff how to handle the package. Most labels also have a tracking number or barcode to track the product’s location in the supply chain. This helps to minimize mix-ups and makes it easy to trace any missing items. This also adds extra security for the consumer or client.
Don’t Forget About the Law
All states and countries have laws and customs on what can be imported. As you package your products for shipments, keep these laws in mind to avoid unnecessary hold-ups. Take photos when you ship your products and when they arrive to review processes as needed.
Are you considering professional 3rd party assistance in warehousing, logistics, transport, domestic or export crating, packaging, or shipping? Contact Days Distribution & Logistics at 886.847.8330 for a quote.
About Days Distribution & Logistics domestic and export services:
Our expertise in export and domestic packing applies to everything from fragile electronic control cabinets to a complete machine line, from simple skidding and shrouding to the latest packing technology for demanding military and commercial applications. We are your crating and packaging experts located in Elkhart, Indiana.