CATEGORY ARCHIVES: Doing Business in Mexico
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Doing Business in Mexico provides news and information about why taking advantage of the growing Mexican consumer market can make sense for your business.
Young entrepreneurs consider the option of having a logistics business, because they are aware that shipping companies are quite successful. A logistics business is a company that stores and delivers goods from other firms. The manager of the company is the one who decides if the company will ship products nationally or internationally. It is advisable to specialise in importing and exporting goods in and out of the country, because it will bring your business more income. In order for the business to be successful, it should have various means of freight transportation. In order to succeed in this industry, you need to be patient, persistent and to have a plan. The greatest challenge shipping companies face is coordinating the inventory, warehousing and the security requirements of their partners. Logistics companies need to collaborate with other firms in order to have shipments.
Logistics companies expose themselves to great financial loss, and the best way to protect yourself from this case is to have cargo insurance. Why do you need cargo insurance? Well, first because you are running a logistics company that is shipping goods in Mexico. You expose yourself to risk daily, when you import and export goods. If this reason is not enough for you, then below are some others. Make sure to read them before deciding to skip this from your business plan.
Cargo theft cases are happening often
Studies show that the cases of cargo theft are in a great rise lately. One of the major problems people face nowadays is identity theft. Identity theft can affect your business, because people with mischievous intentions can get involved in fictitious pickups. Another case of cargo theft implies counting piracy. These cases are happening quite often when shipping companies are delivering goods internationally.
Insurance experts state that they have seen countless cases of cargoes being stolen from the drivers on the road to Mexico. Cargo theft is one of the main factors that should make you consider the option of getting insurance for all your shipments.
Containers are lost at sea regularly
Shipping companies state that every year they experience cases of containers lost at sea. Nowadays, logistics companies have to consider the option to ship at sea if they want to deliver to Mexico. If you want to collaborate with companies that need to transport a huge number of goods, and they have to ship them to Mexico, then having your own megaships can be highly profitable for you. But this action comes with great risks. Statistics show that around 800 containers are lost at sea every year. You can count on your luck, or you can have an insurance. Do not put your business at risk, because this type of incident can be catastrophic even for a well-established business. If you are running a start-up, you have two options, you either collaborate with companies that do not need overseas shipping, or you get insurance for all your shipments.
Cargoes get damaged
It is something common a cargo to get damaged during transportation. These situations are even more common than the ones when shipments are lost at sea, or they are stolen. Statistics say that there are numerous factors why shipments get damaged or deteriorated. In 30% of the cases the damage a cargo experiences is physical, in 15% of the situations the temperatures are the ones that create damage. Also, there are situations when containers are lost overboard, or they get infested. These situations are quite often and there are so many factors that cause them, you should not risk the success of your firm. One way to prevent these situations is to collaborate only with reliable warehouses. When you run a logistics firm that is shipping internationally, you will have to collaborate with warehouse providers worldwide. Make sure you check the facilities and safety options they offer, when you choose the Mexico warehousing option.
Companies require you to have an insurance when transporting their goods
Your partners will definitely want to know that you have insurance for the shipments you make. When choosing a logistics company to import or export goods from Mexico for them, the first factor they check is insurance. Having an insurance guarantees them that they can recover their money in case of an incident. An insurance does not protect only your business, but also theirs. When you will sign contracts with partners make sure that you read carefully all their stipulations, because you do not want to get involved in an unfavourable situation.
The cases of non-compliance with the terms of the contracts you sign are catastrophic for your business. You can experience great financial loss and even legal issues.
Catastrophic events can happen daily
When shipping internationally, cargoes cross the territory of multiple countries. This means that they are exposed to numerous weather conditions, and as you already know, the weather is unpredictable. Other catastrophic events can include, explosions, shipwrecks and pirate attacks. Catastrophic events caused the loss of around 3000 containers last year. One famous case is the one from the Tianjin explosions in China. Pirates have taken all the containers.
You decide what the insurance policy terms are
When you choose an insurance policy it is important for you to decide the terms, because it is essential they to be favourable for you. There are numerous options when it comes to insurance policies, because providers are aware that different logistics companies have different requirements. Make sure that you are satisfied with the limits, terms and valuation established by your provider. Do not leave the insurance up to your partners, because they will choose one that is favourable for them. In this situation, you are at the risk of not being properly protected, and this can be dangerous for your business. In case you collaborate with Mexican businesses, it is advisable the insurance to be translated, because the terms can differ and they need to know exactly what cases are covered.
Keep in mind that your partners count on you to ship their good at the destination, so in case an incident happens, you can use the insurance to cover the losses.
Multi-level Marketing, or direct sales, has become much more than something your friend posted on Facebook. Multi-level marketing has increasingly proven to be a sustainable business model, one that more and more new businesses are turning to in an effort to engage their consumer audience. By utilizing brand advocates and encouraging representatives to spread their story, many MLM’s have sprouted, grown, and are ready to take root in new areas across the globe. But when is the right time for your MLM to cross the border? We spoke with our Direct Sales experts and got the latest news and tips on when to transition out of ‘US Only’ status.
Making the Decision
If you’re a sales representative who is fluent in Spanish and obtains permission from your company to expand to Mexico, you’re ready to go international. Likely, something that drew you towards direct sales was the openness to be your own boss, and this is a chance to make a business decision that helps to define that. No official title is required to expand your sales base across the border, just drive and knowledge. As we commonly share, new markets hold returns, so it may be time for you to own your management position within the company and expand your sales base (and income level).
Know the Basics
You have the decision making power, but do you have the basics down for logistics and shipping across the border? The answer is simple, you don’t have to. Our sales experts know the ins and outs of customs clearance, export laws, and MLM needs. We work with companies of all kinds and have the knowledge you need to cross the border to Mexico without hesitation. But if you’re a self-starter (like most MLM reps) we also share Inventory 101, warehousing tips, and import tax knowledge with you on a regular basis, because knowing what it all means it step one of seeing the results. We know that you’re always learning and are here to help you along the way.
Choose the right partners
We are members of the Direct Sales Association, which means we know who you know, and get the latest news too. As a supplier in the DSA, Estafeta provides assistance to MLM companies regarding the importation, exportation, fulfillment, and delivery of goods and services everywhere in Mexico (if none of that made sense, check out our quick reference dictionary). It also means that we know the answers to problems you may not have faced yet, and we are always willing to share our lessons learned. Our relationship with DSA benefits so many, and not just when we visit the Direct Sales Association Trade Show every year. We have the experience, relationships, and knowledge to help your MLM find new customers, increase returns, and expand to Mexico.
Talk to one of our shipping experts and see how much it really cost to export to Mexico, we’re guessing it’s less than you think.
As EstafetaUSA continues to offer customers warehousing services, our experts wanted to provide you and your team some education about Warehousing 101! As the leaders in providing full warehouse management for you and your company as they ship to Mexico, we’re devoted to educating our customers on the best ways to warehouse and keep your profits rising. EstafetaUSA has been offering everything from everyday management, to pick and pack forwarding, to simply helping your warehouse team navigate customers, with an eye on making sure your packages navigate safely and securely through Mexico. Our dedicated warehousing team, perfect for companies both big and small who have a continual need to serve customers in Mexico, have a big recommendation for these companies; know how to inventory!
Companies, big and small, have to quickly learn about inventory and what it means to them and their timeline (and bottom line.) We are happy to share our logistics knowledge to help businesses across the world streamline their shipping methods, no matter their level of experience with shipping. We know that inventory is one of the most crucial aspects of successful logistics and want to help professionals of all levels improve their operations with it. Using these five methods, your business can maintain a consistent inventory without going out of your way or budget.
Set par levels
In most things, your aim is to be consistently below par. In shipping, “par” refers to the amount of inventory on hand (typically an amount designated by the purchasing department) at all times, and it’s an important level to be consistently at or above. By remaining at levels close to par, you are able to satisfy all customers and escalate sales without losing money on storage space for extra goods or risking spoilage of goods. It is also important to note that your par level may change as your business grows or trends emerge, while it may be a fluid metric at times it is important to have recorded for efficiency.
It’s one of the rules of business and life; finish the task at hand before starting something new. By utilizing a First-in-First-out method, you can reduce potential spoilage and avoid packaging damage as much as possible. While the ideal situation is to always sell your exact inventory amount, this is rarely a perfect science which means that sometimes items have to wait on the shelf until the next round of shipments. You need to minimize loss caused by those scenarios and maximize profit. The answer is as simple as selling oldest stock first and rotating product. Whether this is done manually or communicated to your warehouse staff, this crucial concept could save you significant amounts of spoiled or worn goods later on.
If you’re managing your own inventory, regular auditing it key in monitoring your product. By setting aside time to do a full inventory, you are able to update your product amounts and evaluate if your current tracking method is effective. If you find that your original numbers were far off, it may be time to consider inventory management methods that are automated to avoid human error. By allowing time for regular stock audits your business is forced to evaluate its methods and ensure that they are functioning as planned. Additionally, it can provide a written record of seasonal trends that can be used for training and forecasting of inventory. Audits aren’t a continual system but rather regular check-ups, they take time and man-power meaning it isn’t sustainable to do daily.
Perpetual Inventory System
In between regular auditing, it is important to have a perpetual inventory or real-time system that allows you to have constant updates on stock levels. This means keeping track of what is going out of stock and what is being reordered at all times, it can be an automated system or kept track of manually with very careful attention to detail. It is from this data that you are able to determine how close you are to your par levels, and how much of each product needs to be ordered to maintain balance. A system that can run continually is ideal as it allows you to manage details that are more variable while also providing the information needed for operations. Likely, your warehousing partner has systems in place to manage this for you and provide you the metrics needed but you may need to request it otherwise.
By keeping meticulous data throughout the year, you are able to forecast future trends and prepare for them. While it’s natural to know what your busy seasons are, by getting in-depth with these results as well as cross-checking them with events, trade shows, or marketing initiatives that your company ran, it could mean data was left on the table that needs to be accounted for. By isolating this data and putting it to use, you can increase company efficiency and reduce cost without it having been replicated yet. For more common events, such as gifting holidays, you may be aware that you need triple the amount of normal inventory but it is important to write down exactly what amount to increase and when so it can be duplicated, as well as to detail which products.
Inventory and warehousing can be looming terms that are often feared and not fully understood. EstafetaUSA is proud to help businesses across the nation by managing and regulating their logistics needs. If you aren’t to that point yet, these methods will make a significant difference in your overhead costs and operations but we are always here to help.
Are you ready to save 30%-40% on your logistics costs with our experts? Contact us today.
Logistics are no small obstacle, and oftentimes we meet customers who have tried to manage the shipping-related complexities on their own, only to get lost in the language and specificities. In an effort to deal with some of the complexities of shipping, we wanted to share some helpful shipping terminology that should help you and your company when it comes to the logistics of getting across the border.
Not all shipping is created equal, or rather, not all shipping needs are equal. Some businesses need to ship 200 packages a day across the country, and others need to ship five packages a week- each highly fragile and expensive. While many company structures are similar their shipping needs vary by factors such as location, shipping volume, product size, and more.
We will walk you through three common forms of shipping, for more specific information pertaining to your business submit your information here and we’ll be in contact shortly.
Ground shipping is the dedicated shipment, via freight truck, to your desired location. For businesses, this dictates a sizable, consistent shipping load that is picked up from one of your company’s locations, including a company loading dock, from office, or warehouse. It allows shipments to be robust and high volume while still maintaining a low operating cost and providing personal service from an experienced EstafetaUSA driver and shipping expert. By using ground shipping for your large shipments, you are able to transport goods between country borders without the cost of air travel, and still move materials that are of a larger size or volume. While making paperwork at any of our customs bonded warehouses a breeze and allowing 24/7 tracking information on your products. Additionally, ground shipping offers a wider array of services such as cold chain shipping (refrigerated trucks) and express courier options that put a rush on your orders.
LTL shipping, or Less Than Truckload, is a good fit for businesses that don’t have a shipping volume large enough to warrant a more robust logistics method. It allows you to have regular shipments, a personal representative to work with, and a low cost per shipment while still utilizing ground shipping techniques. LTL shipping is a form of ground shipping that allows for a shipment volume that would normally be too small to warrant a on-location pickup. We see a lot of LTL clients starting their business with these services, and gradually growing their service level from there to warehousing, air freight, and more. Companies with limited frequency or volume in shipments will find this service may fit them best, while companies with a larger volume or higher frequency may find themselves leading towards the larger scope of services that ground shipping offers.
Air Freight shares many of the factors that other methods offer however it is unmatched in speed and can handle a large volume shipment at any time. Shipping via plane rather than freight truck for most companies is the only way they’ll ship, meaning this higher-cost method is their only way to get your package across the border. If your shipments are palletized, extensive, and need to arrive quickly, air freight is likely your best option. With one of the largest air cargo fleets available in Mexico, we can distribute from US or Mexican warehouses and move your product in style. These options allow us to move large volumes of product in the most efficient method possible and ensure prompt delivery and handling. While air freight may not be for everyone due to the large volume required, if your company is moving more than trucks can handle or needs it there faster than a freight truck can manage we are here to help.
After you have your shipping methods in line, it comes time to decide where your products will be shipping from. Most companies start out with a basic knowledge; they can either drop off packages at a location, or request a pick-up. That’s the start of it. Then come the decisions as to how many companies you will employ to manage each step of the process (order processing, fulfillment, delivery, tracking) and where you will base your warehouse. Before those decisions are made, let’s clarify a few terms that are commonly used for warehousing that may help you decide the scope of work you will need from your logistics provider.
Fulfillment services refers to the process that occurs between the time a customer orders and receives their products. This can range from a practice involving one provider to a team of companies. It includes anything from kitting to assembly and shipment as well as everything in between. Most commonly the fulfillment process begins with a customer placing an online order and a third-party service processes the order and selects the necessary items then packages them appropriately. Next comes the package tracking methods and how quickly it will arrive at their door. While many middle steps can occur (assembly, kitting, warehouse inventory, etc) this process simply means how you get your products to their new owners.
Pick & Pack
Pick and pack is the process of having inventory on hand and using it to fulfill customer orders. Warehouses are laid out specifically so that each product can be pulled as ordered and packaged specifically for that customer. For example, if cosmetics are being shipped and a customer orders 3 lipsticks and 6 blushes, the cosmetics company itself doesn’t need to manage the order, rather EstafetaUSA gathers those items from our warehouse storage and delivers it directly to the customer. This means the only responsibility left to the seller is to provide inventory to the warehouse as needed.
Much like Pick & Pack, kitting refers to the gathering of materials to be used for fulfillment. However, kitting differs by eliminating the custom option of orders. By packing boxes with the same combination of goods, a ‘kit’ can be created and prepared for the next customer who places that order. For example, the same cosmetics company sells a package of various lipsticks, blushes, and cosmetics. Those can be prepackaged to enable faster shipping once the order is placed.
Many products have more than one stage of assembly for production. The sub-assembly process entails the logistics provider using the raw parts in order to compose the first stage of assembly and then shipping off for final assembly. For example, a chair may have the frame assembled in our warehouse and then be shipped to an upholstery specialist for finishing. This step often makes the final assembly process significantly easier, and cuts down shipping costs because the products can still be packaged as a smaller size.
While dedicated warehousing refers to a facility that your company owns and runs, shared warehousing is held by a third party and can be shared among multiple companies. This allows labor costs to be averaged for all customers using the facility and drastically lowers the entry cost for equipment and supplies. EstafetaUSA offers custom bonded warehouses at entry points across the border, meaning costs are lower for companies taking part in them and customs is a part of the everyday process, meaning fewer hiccups.
Most companies can save between 30% and 40% and sometimes more. Contact one of our shipping experts today.
Rely on Estafeta to transform your business logistics in Mexico into a competitive advantage.
Most companies will tell you that they provide more services for less money, but not all can back it up. As Mexico’s largest shipping company, we’re trusted by thousands of individuals and businesses to get their packages from door to door, with ease and efficiency. With the right amount of shipping for your business, we may be able to save your company from 30%-40% off what you are paying for comparable services when you ship outside of the country. Shipping, especially for your business, means not only reining in expenses wherever possible, but reining in expenses while also prioritizing your delivery experience.
Save on Shipping Fees
Shipping for your business doesn’t look the same for everyone. If your business specializes in shipping products with a declared value of under $50, we may be able to help you complete paperwork to exempt you from paying most taxes (or VAT) when shipping to Mexico. It means that inexpensive products or materials, whether it’s an eCommerce offering products such as clothing and blankets, or an assortment of smaller goods and supplies to your offices across the border, can be shipped at a lower cost for less stress. We also ensure that you work with an Estafeta USA shipping expert, who can talk you through which fees and duties you will need to pay (and which you can avoid entirely) to make sure there’s always someone in your corner helping you save. Shipping more expensive items? You can learn more about the complete breakdown of per-shipment pricing, taxes, and more here.
Ground Shipping to Mexico
While many international shipping companies require your products to be loaded onto a plane and flown into Mexico, we are the only company that also offers ground shipping across the border. That means your shipments, whether they are less than a load or a few freights worth, can be shipped in a few different ways to accommodate the shipping strategy that works best for your business. We even assign a personal shipping expert to you in order to make sure all the proper paperwork is done beforehand. We won’t leave you wondering what step comes next.
With more cities serviced across Mexico than anyone else, our connections make a difference. Our over 100 point of sales in Mexico mean that not only can we get your package closer to your customer, we can do it for less too. With thousands of customers across the nation, your packages are rarely alone on the freight, cutting cost for your business and accelerating delivery time. We use our size to our advantage, and yours too.
Leveraging Shipping Costs
Part of shipping smarter is leveraging costs you don’t have to make into shipping options that will protect you in the future, and Estafeta USA’s insurance options provide peace of mind today and a lower overall cost on shipping. We offer attractive damage/loss insurance options that can save you money and stress, call our shipping experts to learn more about insurance options for your shipments. By streamlining that process and dealing with a single company instead of multiple not only are your packages safer, and your bill lower overall, it also requires less time on your end. We make tracking easy and insurance options reasonable while also providing you peace of mind.
Consolidation can be much more than convenient, it can be cost effective. If you’re warehousing with one company and shipping with another your bills are higher and your billing cycles more stressful. We offer consolidation services so that you can do much more than just ship with us at one low rate. We can store your goods, take care of kitting and tracking needs, and ship them straight from our warehouses (making delivery lightening fast).
Want to save 30-40% on each shipment your business sends across the border? Contact one of our shipping experts today.
We work to make sure your services are what’s best for you and saves you money at every turn.