The United States Postal Service (USPS) has recently announced that it is planning to test a new “experimental” product that aims to assist an all-in-one style cross-border eCommerce service.
USPS stated their new Global eCommerce Marketplace (GeM) Merchant product “represents the Postal Service’s eCommerce solution to remove the uncertainty and complexity risks facing US online merchants and their international consumers”.
USPS explains that the service will work like this: “Under GeM Merchant, overseas buyers will purchase items from an eCommerce merchant website within the United States that may be integrated with software designed to calculate destination country duties and taxes.
“At time of purchase, the buyer would be able to prepay the estimated duties and taxes that will be assessed by the foreign country’s customs agency once the shipment arrives in the foreign destination.
“The customer will then receive the order and prepare the item for domestic shipment to the GeM processing facility.
“Once the item arrives at the processing facility, the Postal Service, or its supplier, will inspect the item for verification and security.
“The Postal Service, or its supplier, will then prepare the item for international shipment to the address of the overseas buyer and arrange for delivery to the addressee.”
USPS has set out – in what will be a 24- month test – plans for initial market testing, at which time a number of GeM Merchant places for US merchants will be offered up via negotiated service agreements (NSAs), which see the market test “assess the revenue potential, the competitive price points, and if and how the solution should be further expanded”.
USPS also went on to say that this new service “is likely to contribute to the financial stability of the Postal Service, by generating more international package mailings that do not currently move within the postal system”.
Importantly, USPS claimed that there is “no inappropriate market disruption”.
USPS added: “There is no reasonable expectation that the Postal Service’s GeM Merchant offering would create an ‘unfair or otherwise inappropriate’ competitive advantage for the Postal Service or any mailer, with regard to any other party (including small businesses),”
“The service offering is designed to improve the international experience for merchants and recipients, and thereby generate more international package deliveries that do not currently exist within the postal system. At present, there are at least four companies offering similar end-to-end services.”
Do you think that this is a service that Magento eCommerce developers in the UK could accommodate? We’d love to hear your thoughts on this one.