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#89 | Duties, Taxes, Global Payment

Tiffanie Archie worked for UPS in global logistics and now she’s the Strategic Partner Manager for Zonos.  If you want to know about shipping or international payments, she’s the person to talk to.  This is a very informative episode of the Global Marketing Show podcast with several key take-aways. 

First off, if you are an ecommerce company of any size, you can export.  Zonos works with companies of all sizes and simplifies the payments, duties, and tax maze.  

Second, you need to figure out where you want to sell.  Stephanie suggests you do the following for logistics and payments: 

  1. Figure out where your products are in demand 

  2. Consider shipping lanes – the more frequent the shipping lanes, the cheaper the costs 

  3. Do your tax, duty, and VAT research 

  4. Determine what payment methods the local market prefers 

Figuring out your tax, duty, and VAT on your own can be complex - You can work with your logistics provider to give you “shipping costs” yet be careful, since that may not include taxes and duties.   

You can either use the Harmonized Codes from the “black box” provided by the government or get the massive hard copy book to find your 10-digit product number to calculate the tax costs.   

Or you can find and ask partners such as a logistics company, an export advisor, your state trade representation, export broker, or you can use Zonos who continually updates and calculates the full “Landed Cost Calculation” price for your customers at check out. 

 Third, be aware of miscoding your products.  Mistakes do happen, yet if you give a detailed code and you include documentation to answer the following questions, the officials are more likely to believe your company is legitimate.   

  1. What is the product? 

  2. What is it made of? 

  3. What is it used for? 

If you get flagged, you may have trouble forever more since you’ve been labeled as non-compliant. 

Fourth, watch the currency exchange.  This can be complicated so Tiffanie simplified it. To keep it simple for a busy business owner, she suggested that you do the following: 

  1. Watch the news.  Keep abreast of current events that could affect your target markets. 

  2. Offer your customers a way to pay that is convenient for them.  With Zonos’s partnership with Opti, users can test different payment options in different markets. 

  3. Watch foreign exchange rates.  She suggested checking it once a month to see if you need to adjust your pricing to be competitive or profitable. 

And, finally, she recommended that you watch out for DDU and DDP.  DDU refers to products delivered to consumers when the duties are unpaid.  Abandonment and refusals are much more common when duties are unpaid which leave the seller responsible for the duties and return costs.  Versus DDP which means the duties are paid. 

 If you are in marketing and responsible for the 4 P’s, this is a good episode to learn about Price and Place for global marketing.  As for the other 2 P’s – the types of Products that can be exported and how to create and translate Promotion materials – listen to other episodes of the Global Marketing Show.   

Read Episode Transcript

ATTENTION:  Below is a machine generated transcription of the podcast.  Yes, at Rapport International, we talk a lot about how machine translation is not good quality.  Here you see an example of what a machine can do in your own your language.  This transcription is provided as a gist and to give time indicators to find a topic of interest. 


[00:00:34] Wendy: Hello listeners to The Global Marketing Show Podcast! I'm so excited to have you here, and today we're gonna talk about money, international payments! So I'm very excited.

[00:00:49] Before we jump right into it I just wanna remind you that the podcast is sponsored by Rapport International, who connects people around the world, no matter the language or the culture with high quality written translation and spoken interpretation. Rapport International offers a hundred percent satisfaction guarantee and has a hundred percent on time delivery over the last 10 years. So any questions, reach out to them, they're the place to go.

[00:01:20] All right! I'm gonna tie money into this because that's our topic today, but you know that phrase that we use in the U.S. that we say "let's table a motion" and it means we're gonna bring that subject up later. So if I say, " we're gonna table the motion about speaking international payments." Well, if you say that in Great Britain, the same thing, tabling a motion, or bringing it to the table for discussion means let's talk about it now, not later. So all those little colloquialisms that you have, or those funny little sayings that you have, make sure to clean them up when you're communicating across language, or you may be talking about something you don't want to.

[00:02:02] So whether you want to, or not international payments, Are necessary when you're doing international business right now, Bitcoin and other cryptocurrency have not taken over. So today, Tiffanie Archie is here to talk to us about that. So, Tiffanie welcome. 

[00:02:21] Tiffanie: Thank you. Happy to be here. Thanks for having me. 

[00:02:24] Wendy: Yes I'm so thrilled! Tiffanie Archie has been passionate about global logistics, trade policy compliance and commerce for the last eight years. And after working in international logistics for a major carrier for seven years, where she was a top performer, Tiffanie joined Zonos as a Strategic Partner Manager. She currently manages tech integrations, she works with customs and brokerage partners, and government agencies. She loves creating mutually beneficial connections with existing, or new Zonos partners and integrating innovative solutions for Zonos customers to help them continue to scale and grow.

[00:03:10] So what kind of clients are you working with Tiffanie? 

[00:03:14] Tiffanie: Sure. So we work with, it's really kind of a, a bevy, pretty much anything. It's a little bit of, a little bit of everything. So we on our, you know, just basic business side, it's a lot of B2C eCommerce customers. Also D TOC in some cases. And then what's kind of fun about my job is I get to actually.

[00:03:33] Work with larger organizations or other organizations where there can be mutual benefit for us, our customers, or also with the other partnerships the organizations that we're partnering with. And so I work with all kinds of different people. So I know you'd mentioned kind of some brokers. I work with carriers.

[00:03:50] I work with government agencies. I work with marketing companies. I work with you know, payment providers. So we do have kind of a big crush share of the things that we're able to go ahead and support our customers with. And you know, there's always. You know, something being new and innovative that's coming out.

[00:04:09] So I, the things, the landscape of global trade is just constantly shifting and changing and, you know, it's, it's awesome because you know, what we see now might actually be, you know, a thing of the past in just two or three years. So it's one of those things that it's definitely everything within this industry kind of keeps you on your toes.

[00:04:30] Right. 

[00:04:30] Wendy: So it's, it's interesting with all the eCommerce, cuz I see a huge opportunity there. If you have a product that you're putting on the internet, you can be found anywhere. And so we come at it from, Hey, put a little translation up there, you know, Rapport International, put a little bit of translation up there.

[00:04:51] And you can attract and close more sales. I mean all the statistics show that, but one of the things. That people talk about is, well, I don't know how to get paid. I don't know how to handle currency risks. If there's duties and taxes, it's just overwhelming to me. So when somebody comes to you with that problem, what do you say.

[00:05:13] Tiffanie: Yeah. So Sonos is an amazing company. I'll too, our own horn a little bit here. We provide landed cost calculations at the time of checkout or, you know, we have APIs that can hang, hang on, hang on, slow 

[00:05:26] Wendy: down, landed cost calculations. So what is that? And what does it 

[00:05:31] Tiffanie: include? Yeah. So let me be very clear about this, cuz I think there is a little bit of confusion out there in the industry.

[00:05:37] And I think some people have adopted the term and they don't really mean what it means. So there are definitely duty and tax only calculators out there. And what those do is they will base a duty and tax calculation on the description of goods or perhaps a harmonized tariff code. And they will pair that with, you know, the origin going to the destination.

[00:05:58] And so. They will come up with like a generic tax rate or a generic duty rate. And that will be passed at checkout. And so they're, you know, just think of it as a straight up. It is what it is duty and tax calculation and landed costs are a lot more involved because what they do is they involve a couple different things first.

[00:06:18] Whenever you're shipping with a major carrier or even some of the smaller consolidators or other kind of carrier service, There can be additional fees involved with that, to where, you know, if there's brokerage fees, if there's carrier specific fees, all that stuff those fees are not typically added in a duty and tax calculation because those don't understand like actually which carrier you're using and it's not taking the shipping carrier or the shipping amount into consideration in those calculations.

[00:06:47] And so it's really important because you could. You know, a huge discrepancy at the end of the day you could be receiving, you know, duty and tax bills from your carrier, and it has all these extra fees that weren't quoted at the time of checkout for your shopper to pay. And so we ensure that one, that those carrier fees are included and it's based.

[00:07:07] On whatever your negotiated you know, discounts or incentives are with that carrier. And then number two, there are also countries out there that are CIF countries. And what that means is that includes the cost of good goods, the insurance and the freight and freight just being your shipping cost.

[00:07:24] So sometimes you're actually sending stuff to countries where they tax the shipping costs and we include those taxes in there. And so. Taxes on taxes and basically. Yeah, so we try and make sure it's a very holistic and complete calculation because, you know, if sometimes we've seen differences of 30 to $50 and you as a, as a, you know, a smaller merchant or a smaller business, if you're just starting out and you haven't prepared for those extra fees or accounted for those within the price of your products, then you know, that could actually like really kind of do a number on your margins and profitability.

[00:08:00] Oh, 

[00:08:00] Wendy: absolutely. Absolutely. If you're talking about an eCommerce company that 30 to $50 difference could really take it away. Absolutely. Okay. So you've worked in logistics and now you're working in the international payments when you're an eCommerce company. And you're thinking about going international.

[00:08:18] Where do you. Where do you start? I mean, I, I, I'm biased. I think you start with the marketing to build in the, but you've gotta have a plan on how you're gonna fulfill it and get paid for it. So where would you recommend an eCommerce company start? 

[00:08:32] Tiffanie: Sure. I think there's a million different ways to slice and Dyson there's, you know, it is kind of a little bit overwhelming and it can be there's what you maybe even wanna do is just really, truly understand where your products are.

[00:08:47] You know where you're looking to ship. So I know if you're, you know, successful domestically, wherever your origin is. That's always really easy because you're dealing with standard domestic taxes. But going outside of, you know, wherever your domicile is, there could be extreme duties and taxes or you know, considerably more than what you're used to.

[00:09:07] And so, you know, just kind of understanding where your products might be. A little bit more, you know, wanted where there's desire, obviously using marketing firms like Rapport, they'd be able to kind of give you a little bit more advice or, you know, be able to point you in the correct direction of like that.

[00:09:22] The world trade organization also has incredible reports on their website. Just in terms of, you know, where your goods where exporting. From a specific country to specific lanes are a little bit more prevalent. And just understanding, I think that, you know, what those duty and tax rates may be.

[00:09:39] It might be, you know, consumer might have an appetite for that wherever you are, where your origin is specifically. But if you're adding another, you know, 20% like in VA, for example if you're adding that to your cost of goods, it's, you need to understand if that's something that is going to be, you know, accepted.

[00:09:57] Paid for. And if not, you know, that's somewhere where maybe you wanna start doing other investigating into additional lanes. So it's kind of like, I think what you wanna even do is understand where your product might have pro a popularity, or if you have a unique selling proposition or, you know, maybe it's I've seen stuff where, you know, just for example you know, hair gel or not gel, I can't pomade.

[00:10:18] I've seen it where it's been super, super, super popular, like in Japan and Mexico and other little. So it could be just that you have popularity in certain regions and then once you're kind of like solid and you can say, you wanna go worldwide too. That's absolutely fine. It's just understanding though, that there are so many payment options out there, and I think that's something that you can also be a bit overwhelming.

[00:10:39] And so people generally, I mean, Pulling up some information not too long ago. And you know, EALs, when we're talking about like apple pay or Google pay you know, they were about four years ago, they still had a pretty good market share. I'm looking at this report from sales cycle and they said around 2018, it was a 36% kind of like market share.

[00:11:00] And that's actually bumped up to 47%. That's a pretty big lift. And they've kind of taken away, you know, some of the market of credit and debit cards and. The thing is, is that 

[00:11:09] Wendy: whatever, no, wait, wait, wait, wait, let me grab that. Yeah. Apple pay and Google pay combined are almost 50% of electronic payments.

[00:11:18] Now 

[00:11:19] Tiffanie: I would say it's and it doesn't say specifically, it just says EWA. So I would assume some of those other bigger players that are out there are going to be kind of included in that. But I would probably guess that Google pay and apple pay are probably two of the larger ones that are definitely out there in the world.

[00:11:35] These. 

[00:11:37] Wendy: Wow. Okay. All right. So, you know, when you were talking through, it was very interesting to me, cuz you said set a strategy, do your market research, find out where your products are desired. Then look at shipping lanes because if there's already shipping lanes established and your comp and your products are desired, your shipping is gonna be less.

[00:11:59] Then you look at taxes duties and. 

[00:12:03] Tiffanie: Or more. So I would say like the shipping lanes, I wouldn't worry so much about that. There's going to be some locations that will definitely have higher shipping costs just because there may not be as much commerce going back and forth. And so carriers might actually like inflate the price per pound or per kilo on those shipments.

[00:12:20] Even for small package, I mean, it's basically just, you know, supply demand. But I think what's even more important outside of that is to really kind of understand You know, the duty and tax costs, because those are the things that will have probably the most significant kind of lift or increase on what, how you would need to price.

[00:12:38] So you'd need to have specific pricing strategies for some of those lanes that you're looking to enter into. 

[00:12:44] Wendy: Okay. So it's, so if you're shipping to Europe or you're shipping to Mexico, they're common shipping lanes, but if you're picking. I mean, I mean, Botswana, there's probably not gonna be as many shipping lanes.

[00:13:00] Tiffanie: Okay. Correct. And there might be, you know, carriers might have one flight there a day or they might have one flight there a week. So you have to kind of take into consideration, you know, your time in transit. and you know, if they are charging a bit of a premium to go to certain lanes. Okay. Which 

[00:13:15] Wendy: makes sense, cuz any, any business owner that's go going to their first company outside of their domestic market is gonna go to something common.

[00:13:24] Okay. Now, where do you research your taxes and duties in that? Charges. So 

[00:13:31] Tiffanie: there's a lot of different. Sure, sure. There's a lot of different places that you can do that. One which I will just kind of name off the top of the bat, but it's an awful suggestion is any of your local government listings in terms of what they have listed out as your harmonized tariff codes and what they are.

[00:13:49] Is there anywhere. From like 10 up to 14, it can kind of vary depending on your destination country. And what you would do is you would go into kind of, they have these big black boxes where you'll enter a description of goods in, and it will spit out usually like a six digit code. And so the six.

[00:14:06] The first six digits of any harmonized tariff code are gonna be global. So as long as you've got those first six numbers, that's going to be incredibly helpful. In understanding what the tax rates or base tax rates might be when you're entering a specific country. But where do you 

[00:14:22] Wendy: go to find this black box?

[00:14:23] Tiffanie: There's one, I think it's HTS or htc.gov, us something, something like that for the us. But if you were to actually look up like find a harmonized tariff code or find a. Something like that. You'll see the us website, for example. And again, it bless, it's just not, they're looking for very specific responses, so I can give you a really good example.

[00:14:45] One of my customers, and I was kind of just trying to show her this at one point, you know, Hey they wanted to understand what their harmonized hair code would be for a t-shirt. And so we typed in t-shirt and there was no response. And what it was is we had to kind of keep pulling back and pulling back and pulling back and it's like, okay, well it's made out of 100% cotton and it's like, okay, So it's clothing or, you know, it's a material made out of a hundred percent cotton.

[00:15:09] Well, is it men's, is it women's because those tax rates can vary crazy enough. So even though it's all made out of the same materials, sometimes there are even little weird things that'll happen like that, or, you know, shoes, depending on what your uppers are versus the bottom bottoms. And if it's leather.

[00:15:24] It's like some kind of synthetic material. You can't just say boots because, you know, it's, it's very complex in terms of like how a country may tax that upon importation. So into that country. So it's just, there's a lot that gets involved. And I, you know, I mentioned kind of like, you can. If you were going to a specific lane, so say you were going to the UK you would look up their harmonized tariff schedule for their, you know, and they would go out to whatever digit that they actually go to.

[00:15:52] But within those fields and it's, it's like, Excel table almost upon Excel table. Like it's, it's really, it's not a lot of fun to dig through. And what it will do is it will show you tax rates that apply to that. So that's kind of like a really, really manual kind of way that you can do it. Sonos offers classifications in an automated fashion.

[00:16:12] So, and what we do is with ours, it's a little bit easier. There's a natural language processor over it. So, if you were to enter, t-shirt in, it'll understand exactly what you're trying to get to. So and it also, if you get an HS code back, it'll do it with the country pairing as well. So it'll do it from whatever origin to whatever destination, and it will do it to that full, you know, whatever the full digit would be for that specific country.

[00:16:37] And then you're able to actually we have like another quota tool that will actually go through and show you what those duty and tax rates are. So we have tools that can help with that. Also, I work with a lot of government agencies. And I know you do too, and they're, they're amazing resources because what they do is they're able to go ahead and help you out with that.

[00:16:57] There are a lot of funds that are available to you as a small business called step funds that are just really there to help promote and encourage exploitation of us meat goods or us based goods. So there's a lot. And you can go to your carriers too. I mean, that's whoever you're working with as a carrier, sometimes they can help you out or sometimes they have the ability to help you you know, get basic information.

[00:17:22] The thing is, is that if you're looking for something if it's like a dangerous, good or strict, a good. You'll definitely wanna talk to a licensed broker about that. Just because, you know, if there's anything that could kind of come back in terms of an audit or whatever you wanna ensure that you're doing that correctly.

[00:17:37] Okay. 

[00:17:37] Wendy: So, so how often do the harmonize codes 

[00:17:41] Tiffanie: change? So every five years the WTL comes back out. I'm sorry. The WCO comes back out. The Dell world customs organization. They do update every five years. It doesn't necessarily mean. That you know, something might have an update, but excuse me, but I can give you an example with the 

[00:18:03] Wendy: world customs organization sets taxes for each country?

[00:18:09] Tiffanie: So the world, world customs organization announces changes every five years. And for example, some things are actually no longer applic. Or they're not being used or, you know, they kind of just go out of usage.

[00:18:24] And then there's also new products that come on the market. For example, I used to have a drone company that I worked with and the way that they were classifying it previously was a little weird. I won't go into the details about it. But because there wasn't actually category for drones, that's what they were doing.

[00:18:40] And so with this recent update, there is a new drone category. So that actually applies because again, it was something that really kind of came out and blew. And then things like typewriters, which have kind of become a little bit more obsolete they've been removed. So there are things that'll kind of come and go, but the other bigger issue actually is whether or not those specific countries will follow the updates.

[00:19:02] And if they are up to date with the updates, because some of them can be five or 10 years behind. Which is crazy. But that's kind of the stuff like where you work with Sonos, we're keeping track of where people are at in terms of updates and all that good stuff. So it's one of those things. It can change.

[00:19:19] They don't change a lot. And then other times you've even, I've seen where countries have changed regulations overnight and it kind of really screws things up. But usually whenever something is happening, a country will typically give, you know, at least a few months, maybe a month to three months just to give people.

[00:19:36] A little bit of a buffer. But yeah, it just is gonna depend on each individual country and then whether they adapt and then whether or not they are up to date. So that's also kind of another bit of a kinda, you know, compliance or regulatory, or even just kind of one of those things that It's not as dire.

[00:19:54] I hope that doesn't sound dire because it's usually pretty good in most of the countries. You're probably going to be shipping to like, you know, any of, you know, Canada, Europe, us, Australia, and Asia. Like a lot of that stuff is everyone's keeping up. It's just a matter of, you know, that's the guidance that the world's custom customs organization provides every five years.

[00:20:16] Wendy: How many different codes 

[00:20:18] Tiffanie: are there? Oh, gosh, there's so many 

[00:20:21] Wendy: I mean, is there a thousand, is there 10,000? A hundred thousand? 

[00:20:26] Tiffanie: so it's a 10 digit code. It is kind of standard and that again, but that's not every single country doesn't follow that. So if you even think about that 10 digit code we're talking about, there could be literally, you know, 0 0 1 0 0 2 0 0 3.

[00:20:41] So there can be up. , you know what it would 10 equal is that 1 million, or I'm trying to think of how many zeros there are, but there are cuz there's chapters. So chapter would be like kind of like an overarching product. And then what it does is it goes down into, you know, sub chapters and then into even more defined.

[00:21:00] Kind of definitions of the goods. So like, I was kind of mentioning about boots. It might be something where it says, okay, it's a leather upper, but like something else on the sole bottom that might be under one subheading. And then it might even go into a little bit more of a deeper kind of like classification.

[00:21:16] So what you'll see is, is you're kind of going through they'll usually those first six, like I said, are gonna be kind of like the general kind of, of whatever this product may be. Yeah. And then what happens. There's two more categories after that. And you're looking at those subheadings. And then as you click through those it'll show like a whole bunch of options.

[00:21:34] So it might say plastic metal, you know, if it's something that's made out of multiple materials and then they even have like the other for like the catch all. So. There are quite a few customs books are really big and really heavy and blessed brokers for going through that whole process of getting licensed and tested because it is definitely if you're into that kind of thing, that's awesome.

[00:21:56] Wendy: a lot of detail. So I guess. Think about like NAS codes are about six numbers, they're five or six numbers. And so you take every NAS code and then you blow them out. Four more numbers to have. Now how much can say you have boots out of a synthetic material and boots made out of leather. How much can the tax and duty vary on that?

[00:22:18] Like if you, you know, how much can it vary is my first question. 

[00:22:22] Tiffanie: Yeah, it's huge. It really can vary because you've gotta think about local markets. And so say a country, maybe one of their big products that they produce is leather. They're going to be taxing more than likely a lot more on leather goods that are imported into their country because they're trying to detract people from importing goods that are available within that own country.

[00:22:45] And so there might be, or there may be additional taxes or additional tariffs, anything like that. What they're going to do is they're gonna try and protect their nationally made goods. And so you might have a country, like I said, that, you know, say for example, that is one of their main exports that they are pushing out or one of their country's most consumable goods.

[00:23:03] They may have, if it's being imported in, it might have like a 20% tax. There might be penalties or not penalties, but, you know, there's, there's different things. Yes. So that's why every single country is different. And these are just generic overview, you know, guidelines. This is not specifics or anything by all means, contact a customs broker, if you need to know specifics, but you know, there's things like that.

[00:23:25] Or it could be countries where they really don't care and the tax rate might not be as much, or they don't import those goods as much. So they may have a lower tax rate or if they import them a lot, maybe they wanna go ahead and have more taxable revenue. And so they attack those certain products, but then.

[00:23:39] You start getting into all of the free trade agreements and all that stuff. So there's so much complexity that goes behind each individual country's tax, you know, kind of revenue and their strategies. So it's, that's why the first six are always great to understand of your harmonized tariff code. But you know, it can vary, you know, significantly based on, you know, whatever, you know, components make up the actual.

[00:24:04] Whole 

[00:24:05] Wendy: is what I should say. And what happens if you classify it wrong? 

[00:24:10] Tiffanie: So that happens a lot. yeah. Or sometimes, yeah, sometimes people classify the HTS codes aren't always required. It's I always say you kind of wanna be the master of your own destiny. And so you probably wanna go ahead and provide an HS code just because if nothing else you're providing, you know, you're stating this is what your goods are.

[00:24:33] Some people go as far as to kind of like look into countries. Like again, like I mentioned, if they have lanes that they're going into specifically they may wanna get zeroed in on that because they're trying to make sure that again, that product cost is calculated correctly and that their margins aren't being eroded by something that, you know, once it gets inbound into country, every country.

[00:24:52] You know, licensed customs brokers. They could work with the carriers. They could be out, you know, it could be a brokerage company within that specific country. It varies across the board. And so what would happen is if somebody saw something very generic, they may open up a package and wanna audit it and actually see cuz you know, maybe somebody said it's jewelry.

[00:25:11] Well, that's not very specific. Is it silver? Is it gold? Is it platinum? Does it have, you know, jewels, does it have amethyst rubs, you know, diamonds? Like what, what exactly are we looking at here? So they may go in and actually find that it's something way more specific with a different tax code and they may charge that tax code or, you know, sometimes.

[00:25:31] Countries are looking for more revenue and they may choose something that might have a higher tax rate as well. So not that I'm saying, you know, that it, it happens. I've seen it happen. I don't know that it happens all the time, but it's just things for you to keep in mind, because if you're providing that clear description of goods, you know what it is, what it's made of and what it's used for.

[00:25:50] That short description of goods, along with an HS classification, you're a lot less likely to be audited. And if somebody does open up the package and see that it is exactly what you said, it was, you're not gonna have issues because those can cause delays. And then there's, you know, the potential for abandoned packages, warehouse fees, you know, there's all kinds of things that start happening at the border.

[00:26:11] If you're not super clear on what your goods are that are entering that country. And then you could also be red flagged in the future. And. What would happen is they would start auditing your packages more frequently is you enter those countries because they've seen that there have been issues with you in the past.

[00:26:27] Wendy: Okay. So all the documentation dig down deep in, get very specific work with a broker to figure out what that is. So you feel comfortable with it. And then also in the documentation you put what, what the products are, what it's made of and what it's used for. And then those two things should line up and they say you're more likely to get pegged as somebody who pays attention to detail.

[00:26:51] Oh, that's really, really good advice. Yeah. Now what about current currency exchange? 

[00:26:57] Tiffanie: Yes. So that's a big deal, right? I mean, we have been seeing historic kind of like exchange rate fluctuations, especially throughout COVID and just even now, I mean, the us being on par with the Euro that it's been years, and I know that we did have some dips last year, too, with COVID, but you know, this is stuff that is just not been seen for a very long time.

[00:27:19] And so that is one thing to consider. First of all, is that obviously, because the dollar is so strong you know, will people in other markets where, you know, their money, isn't going, as far as it used to, will they, your, will your product still be appealing at X price? So, you know, you wanna kind of keep.

[00:27:35] Big swings like this in mind. You know, sometimes people have been reducing their prices a little bit. Sometimes they've been, you know, increasing it maybe because they're also seeing the increase in demand. There's also the issues of like, you know, whether or not you have the product even available to sell.

[00:27:49] And then there's also people who overstocked. And so they're trying to get rid of stuff. So it's just because the markets have been so crazy. The supply chains have been so crazy. We've had. All these crazy things happening, that there has been so much variability and volatility over the last couple years.

[00:28:04] But you know, foreign exchange, you definitely wanna. Keep an eye on that. And I think even more importantly, you know, kind of what we started out with in terms of payment methods is you need to really understand the markets that you're going to and the types of payment methods that they're used to utilizing.

[00:28:19] Because I think people are trying to fit everyone into a little bit of a box and, you know, everyone's like, oh, they have PayPal, they have apple pay. They have Google pay everywhere in the world. Like, and it that's actually not the case. So, I mean, there are. These things that are present, or even if it is present, it may be that like certain regions or certain countries don't like using those forms of payment.

[00:28:41] You know, I, I was at a conference a little bit earlier this year and it was really fascinating when you start looking at specific areas, it might even be that they don't like any kind of electronic. Kind of current you know, payments. They may be more used to bank drafts or wires. So, and I know wire's an electronic payment, but I mean something a little more convenient, but it's, so it's really interesting.

[00:29:04] You really need to kind of do your research and there's a lot of partners out there too. I mean, there's a lot of payment providers, but if you're offering your products to areas that may be a little less. Commonly, you know, utilized or commonly shipped to just study those areas. Because again, like I said, we've, they've been finding really vast differences in terms of like what accepted payments are what's used and there are.

[00:29:31] Definitely, you know, outside of the us, if you're shipping from outside of the us. Okay. 

[00:29:35] Wendy: So wait a minute, Tiffany, we got, you know, like on the beginning on the taxes and the payments and I mean, on the harmonized code, like I could wrap my head around that I could say, yeah. Okay. I've gotta work with somebody.

[00:29:46] I figure it out. I've got consistent packages that I'm doing. I know what it is. I document all that. I got it. Okay. Yes. Currency exchange are now making me really. Because the dollars on par, that means us goods are more expensive. I gotta keep an eye on that. And it fluctuates wildly all the time. How do you boil that down for an exporter?

[00:30:07] So it's not intimidating. 

[00:30:09] Tiffanie: Got it. So, and I guess I should pull back. It's not fluctuating like all over the place and it's not, it's just that the fluctuations we've experienced over the last two years have definitely been major shifts like versus, you know, over the last 20 years. So it's not something, I mean, you wanna keep an eye on it, but it's also just kind of the cost of doing business.

[00:30:28] Right? We need to understand cuz this is something that anything that's kind of happening globally can kind of affect you, especially if you are in the global marketplaces and you're trying to sell. So. Understanding that is big, but I think even bigger is understanding kind of some of the new players in global payments.

[00:30:45] I mean, you mentioned Bitcoin, some people are definitely starting to accept cryptocurrencies. It's been really interesting to kind of see a little bit more shifts that way, but, you know, I think there's also still concerns on the regulatory side about, you know, crypto also, I can't remember. There was another one that was just recently poached where everybody just lost everything that was in their wallet within the last week or so.

[00:31:05] And so. There's still, obviously going to be issues with that as that stuff is tested out. You know, people are still saying, they think crypto might be the way to a global currency. Yeah. Who knows that's still to be seen, but you know, crypto's definitely a really interesting part in the market. We're also looking at buy now, pay leaders have gotten huge.

[00:31:22] And, but again, it's like, you can't go out to every single country thinking they'll be interested in a buy now pay later if they really wanna do. Transfers. And so find out pays are great. And it's actually, you know, that is one thing that people are absolutely like clamoring for. 

[00:31:38] Wendy: Okay. So to how not to make it intimidating, you kind of watch the global markets, particularly in the country or countries that you're going into, then you have to understand what payments are.

[00:31:48] Did in those countries. And then, and then how often am I looking at the exchange rate once a month? Once a day. Once a week? Yeah, I think 

[00:31:58] Tiffanie: once a month is fine now, just because, I mean, the, again, it's like there might be pennies in exchange. It's just that, like, you know what we've seen over the two years with Euro, I think.

[00:32:08] We were at a dollar 50 pre COVID, like maybe it was our dollar 50 to one Euro was probably right around it. But again, like I said, so it's 50 cents that it's happened over two years. So where we've kind of become a little bit more apart, but there's the other thing. So one thing you might wanna keep in mind too, is like any of like the craziness that's going on around in the world.

[00:32:28] So like UK, UK, and Russia. Yeah. That's. Or not UK, I'm sorry, EU and Russia, all the stuff that's been going on with Ukraine. And sorry, I meant to say Ukraine. So yeah. Anything doing, you know, major global events, you wanna kind of watch that because that's actually, what's making the, the, probably the biggest dent in kind of the EU currency.

[00:32:47] Russia's threatening to cut them off in terms of gas. So that's gonna be another really big kind of question mark as to what's going to be happening with that moving into the latter part of the year. And then, you know, we've seen inflation across the board, so everybody's kind of dealing with that.

[00:33:02] So when there are large things like this, you wanna kind of like be paying attention to currency effects because those are gonna be things that are gonna be big global shifters. But you know, 

[00:33:12] Wendy: So current events, your local market payments, and then once a month check in on currency exchange. Okay. Yeah.

[00:33:19] You boiled that down for me. yeah. Good. 

[00:33:22] Tiffanie: I can make one recommendation, which they're they are partnered with ZNO they're called Opti and kind of why I am really interested in our partnership with them is just that they actually partner with all of the payment partners. And so what it is is almost, and I apologize to Opti if they're listening.

[00:33:39] I'm not distilling this well feel free to go ahead and reach out to me so I can start distilling it in a better fashion, but basically what's great is they are the marketplace. So you can actually sign up through those payment providers, but they kind of say these are the providers that are in X country, X region.

[00:33:54] And so you're able to go ahead and get everything signed up through there, but then they also have a dashboard where you can. The effectiveness of those payment methods within those regions. And so maybe there's another one that you prefer a little bit more, or you wanna try out something else within a region you're able to go ahead and do that.

[00:34:10] Or maybe like on the, by now pay laters. If they're not, if their approval rates aren't very high, you could switch it out with like another by now payment. 

[00:34:16] Wendy: So there's a lot of ways to play with it, to see it's that back to the AB testing on their price, the. The four PS if you're a marketer. Okay. And the last thing like we're out of time, but I wanna keep going, because this is really good information.

[00:34:31] DDU return packages, refusals, or DDP. There's a whole bunch of words in there. What, how do we boil it down and make it easy on, on handling that? 

[00:34:43] Tiffanie: Sure. So DDU delivered duties and taxes are delivered unpaid. So that means that you're putting the onus on your constantly, the person who purchased that from you, the IOR, the importer record, whatever you wanna call.

[00:34:55] You're putting onus on them, paying those duties and taxes coming into the country and going into that imported as it's imported into that destination. There are some issues with this. Sometimes it works really well because if it's a low value shipment, there are not duties and taxes assessed. It just depends on each individual countries do minimus value and also their tax schemes for their particular.

[00:35:17] Wherever they're at. And so, you know, sometimes you can get away with that and not worry about it. Other countries require that you're managing those tax payments on low value shipments. So just keep that in mind, Sonos can help out with that. But DDP is delivered duties and taxes delivered paid.

[00:35:33] And so that means that again, as we're quoting out, those landed costs that we kind of started out with at checkout for your customers. You're able to go ahead and collect whatever funds are going to actually be billed to you. You know, whatever kind of you'll. Build by your carrier or courier or consolidator, whatever you're using.

[00:35:48] And so it's what helps is with DDP. There's not really generally going to be any issues with refusals, abandoned packages or returns because everything's paid and it should just deliver like a standard domestic package. With DD, you do have those issues of, you know, abandonment returns and you know, refusals.

[00:36:07] So it's a matter of like you would then have to pay to get. Shipped back to you, you would also have to pay for any of the uncollected duty and tax that the carrier took on for you. So there are other kind of complications that come with that, however, You know, you've gotta kind of balance it out and have your own little strategy that you go with that cuz typically lower value stuff isn't as susceptible to this.

[00:36:27] But again, all these countries now are starting to see revenues that are coming through for some of the other countries who have started doing More enforcing with that. So it really does get a little bit more complicated. And like I said, XOs is always happy to help out and talk with people and get a little bit more of an explanation put behind that.

[00:36:45] Wendy: So, yeah. So this is where XOs is really making an impact because if you go, if you start with your logistics provider and say, okay, how am I gonna ship my stuff? Which is a reasonable. You know, leading way to figure out how to export. They could say it's this much to ship. They don't cover the taxes and duties.

[00:37:03] And then you get yourself into this mess with DDU or the wrong classification or all that. But if you go to Sonos, it's a fully inclusive price and you've got the partner with Opti. That you can play around with different payment systems and the partnership, of course, with Rapport International to translate your marketing materials or your, your, your.

[00:37:27] Goods of sales or your documentation. So you can do that. So, and you've got a ton of partnerships, unfortunately, we're out of time to talk about some of the other ones. But this has been so valuable to, to break it down and not make it so scary with all these terms and everything for eCommerce companies.

[00:37:43] So I have to ask what's your favorite foreign word? 

[00:37:48] Tiffanie: Ooh. I was actually, and I apologize. I was just thinking about this, cuz I'm looking for some tattoos and there are some that are, have to do with like travel or wanderlust. I'm gonna have to look it up and get back to you, but it was actually a really beautiful German word.

[00:38:01] And I do not remember what it is. I know I'm trying. I always like sorti like with, you know, the French exit. So , I always thought that was super cute. So that 

[00:38:11] Wendy: one's a good one. Yeah. And then the German word for wanderlust, if you're listening to this podcast and you know what it is, certainly put it down in the comments of the show notes or get in touch with either one of us.

[00:38:23] That's. That's hysterical. That is a that's a great tattoo, as long as it's not the length of your arm. 

[00:38:31] Tiffanie: right. I looked up its Fernway. So our OA, so F E R N w E H. So, and it actually is little bit more than just wander list. They, oh, migratory instinct, urge to travel DRMO, mania, wander list, passion for travel.

[00:38:48] So there you go. Oh, I like 

[00:38:51] Wendy: that one. 

[00:38:52] Tiffanie: Yeah. 

[00:38:53] Wendy: Kinda fun. Fern was, would you just get the name or would you get a picture put on with it? 

[00:38:58] Tiffanie: I would just do like really basic script I'm into those really simple lines and kinda, you know, just something very small, but meaningful. 

[00:39:06] Wendy: And that is one that will never go away in 

[00:39:08] Tiffanie: your life.

[00:39:09] Yes. Yeah. 

[00:39:10] Wendy: Yeah. That's something that'll stay. I love that. Any final words of advice, particularly for eCommerce business owners. For doing international. Like why should they do it? And words of advice. 

[00:39:23] Tiffanie: Yeah. Well, if you aren't, your competitors are, I can tell you that right now. You're also skipping out on, you know, what we always used to say at the carrier I worked at was 95% of the world's population lives outside of the us.

[00:39:35] And so I think. You know, just going out there and hitting up people with that disposable income that wanna buy your products. They absolutely do. So you're really kind of excluding you know, the potential for, you know, huge revenue and you know, much more profitability for you and your company to be able to grow and expand and become a global brand.

[00:39:52] I. I know it can sound a little daunting, but that's why you have partners too. So you have a multitude of people that you can start to partner with and just ask for help because that's the thing. I think people, you know, anyone starts out small, right? It's just that stuff will start to blow up and you will start to find more and more interest.

[00:40:09] And as you develop your brand further too, I mean, it's just, you're going to continue to find people who want your product. It's just a matter of like partnering with the right people and, you know, reaching out to one partner who might be able to refer you to two or three other people. Like it's just really, you know, not being afraid to ask for help, I think is probably the best advice.

[00:40:27] That's 

[00:40:28] Wendy: fantastic. That's absolutely great. Well, Tiffany, thank. Oh, where can people reach you? I knew I had to ask something else. Cause this is Tiffany is so knowledgeable. So reach out to her if you wanna be a partner or whether you're interested in her services. So how can they reach you? 

[00:40:44] Tiffanie: Yeah, so they can reach out to me, Tiffanie.

[00:40:46] So it's T I F F A N I E@zonos.com and that's Z as in zebra. O N as in Nancy, O S as in Sam, 

[00:40:58] Wendy: Okay, so Tiffanie@zonos.com. That's the best way to reach you his email. All right. Thank you. Absolutely. So, so much so listeners, I hope having me. Yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah. I loved it. I could have gone on with some more questions, but we're way over time.

[00:41:16] We're aiming for a half an hour, but that's good. Cuz it was good information. So if you enjoyed. Episode, please like it. If you know somebody that runs an e-commerce company, and they've been a little intimidated about how to answer all these questions and get started, certainly forward this on with Tiffany@zonos.Com's email address.

[00:41:37] Cuz she certainly knows all that. All that side of the business and if not, has a partner that can do it so forward, like, and follow us if you wanna hear the, the next episode. So thanks so much for listening to the global marketing show podcast. 


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