Global expansion, localizing content, and selling in multiple currencies and languages
I'm not sure how to put in a features request - please can someone tell me if this way doesn't work.
I have been looking into how as a small business I can improve the experience for my EU customers of purchasing from myself, post Brexit as a UK business.
Royal Mail have recommended a company called Taxamo assure which acts as a IOSS. They calculate and charge the customer VAT and pay it to the EU on our behalf without us having to fill in the VAT return. They charge £2 for each transaction. It sounds like the perfect solution but unless you are a shopify plus business one cannot get access to the Shopify checkout and do the API integration. The irony is if you are a shopify plus customer you will be big enough and it will be more cost effective to set up your own IOSS.
I have spoken to support about this who have suggested that I put in a feature request. So here it is. If more people can also express an interest in this feature it may have more chance of being implemented and go somewhere to ease the Brexit headache of doing business with the EU.
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I am very interested in your services. We have an ioss already and have been with crossborderit without any issues, however, the increase in fees is something, as a small business, we can't justify. Is there someone available to go through the change over and process with me please?
As a company that used CBIT from the very start we have also had to move away from them due to the price increase. EAS have been really helpful and have a much more affordable solution for us. We wish we were sending 100 parcels per month to Europe but sadly it is closer to 5-10.
EAS are also able to handle digital download tax which we are currently in the process of switching to them as well.
It is still early days with EAS but they have been responsive and helpful with the changeover and all is running smoothly so far.
Please, go to www.easproject.com. You can arrange a video meeting with our consultant there via a calendar app. : Meeting with EAS (hubspot.com)
done. thank you
Great to hear some good feedback regards EAS. We are currently looking at shipping outside EU as we stopped since Brexit. We were seriously considering CrossBorderIt but glad we didnt install that looking at the current prices. Our ECom web designer has suggested EAS or Taxdoo. Taxdoo rates look high but EAS sounds reasonable.
I also talked with EAS and will soon start shipping to the EU again after stopping following the imposition of new VAT rules. I note other posts stating similar intentions. Previously Germany was a good market for us and most likely for other sellers as well who may be unaware of the changes to German packaging laws since June 2022 that affect any seller sending goods to Germany, no matter how small a seller you are. It applies also to the product packaging as well as the shipping packaging. Even people with craft items on sites like Etsy are affected by this. If you don't comply with the regulations and are not registered with the authorities your package will be returned with all the problems that that entails. You can wade through tons of detail on various websites and get depressed by it all but I found a quite useful guide to it here. Hope this helps someone:-)
Thanks for flagging this - we had no idea about the German Packaging laws! We ship to Germany regularly so today we sorted our registration on LUCID (easier than expected despite some strange German-English translations of words/meanings!) and also signed up with RECLAY to pay our packaging licence fee. Very easy and instant process....relieved and surprised!
For anyone that's worried about extra costs of entering this minefield...registration with the governing organisation LUCID is free.
Registration with one of the 'dual system' partners (they are the companies who collect and process the recycled packaging materials in Germany and who you pay the 'packaging' licence fees to) was also easy.
Prices vary significantly - you can go to their websites and enter in data about how many KG's of paper/cardboard/plastic etc. you might ship into Germany and they give you a price immediately on screen without you having to pay/commit to them as your chosen 'licence fee partner'.
We checked out a few of the 'dual system' companies prices for comparison and found RECLAY to be the best...so we went with them. All in English, super easy process.
We rounded up our estimate for 2023 to 23kg of paper/cardboard + 1 kg plastic we paid €14.89 for the year. If you monitor your parcels (especially if you're getting underway with IOSS and expect to ship more to Germany in the future) you can add supplementary 'licences' and top up your payments at any time.
What is key is that the amounts you enter into your 'dual system' licence fee partner must also be entered into the LUCID system too and they must match. You are responsible for entering the info into both systems. The LUCID system is the central database of all the info - this is I guess where the customs people look you up to check you're legit.
Allow yourself a couple of hours to work your way through it.
More useful info on all of this is here too https://packhelp.co.uk/german-packaging-act/
Thanks guys and @LauraECY. I appreciate there will be many here who decide Germany is not worth the effort, and there are no doubt many of the same opinion in the rest of the EU, as the rules apply equally to them, not to mention China and the US. So if you do make the effort you might find less competition and more demand for your products than previously:-)
Rules are getting more stringent in EU and the authorities have been learning from their mistakes. One has to follow the rules to be compliant on this huge market. We expect that IOSS will become mandatory soon and it is best that everyone starts using this special scheme now while it is still optional . But it is not always that the rules become more complicated for non-EU operators. For example, single VAT registration will make everyone's life much easier.
Thank you for your help with the IOSS initially when we needed one. I cannot fault the service and in particular your customer service and response time. However, as our store isn't open all year round, we are not able to take the increase when not selling anything. No one would be expected to pay for a service they were not using, and, as a small business we can't. Once again thank you for your help and support with the IOSS.
Simply not true. The + 3% charge on VAT means that that is not all you pay for their service.
EAS. Do you work with sole traders or only limited companies ? I ask because your registration process requires a copy of company registration documents, seemingly ruling out sole traders. I'm also asking here because you have not replied to this question on your chat box despite leaving email address, twice now. Think you have to do better.
We DO work with sole traders!
Apologies for missing your questions. We will do better.
What is required is UTR, I think SA302, anything that identifies you as a business. IOSS is B2C scheme so that is what we have to show.
We are here to help you. If all else fails, just book a meeting with us on our site!
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