Prepping for International E-Commerce Orders

WWW. Stands for World Wide Web!
Once a website is created, it is accessible throughout the world. Companies must think about many issues when creating a website. Responding to international inquiries is one of those issues:



  • At the very least, delegate an employee to respond to each international inquiry:
    -The company may not be ready to accept international inquiries now. However, the business may grow, in the future, and the company may decide to expand internationally. It is important to address these inquiries in a professional manner.
  • If the company is not prepared to enter the international market, this should be stated on the web site:
    -Sample phrases- “International orders are not accepted at this time.” “Only domestic orders accepted at this time.”


  • The company must have knowledge on the following:
    1. International payment methods – credit cards, drafts, letters of credit
    2. U.S. Export Administration Regulations – Exports are controlled for a variety of reasons – country embargos, end-use of products, end-users, and some items require an export license. You must understand and comply with these regulations because ignorance is not an excuse.
    3. Logistics in an international transaction:
      -How will freight forwarders, courier services, and other transport modes be utilized?
      -Is the buyer or seller responsible for shipping?
      -Who will pay for import duties and taxes?
      -Has the company developed a process to send a quote in response to an inquiry?
      -Is there a process in place to handle products refused by customs or the buyer?
      -How will the company handle returns and repairs?

E-Commerce Resources:

  • Merchant Risk Council: Establishes the standards of good practice in the e-commerce environment including fraud evaluations, pressroom articles, and free email notifications.
  • Clearcommerce: http: Provider of fraud protection and processing solutions for online retailers.
  • FBI-Internet Crime Complaint Center: Internet related criminal complaints and research available.
  • U.S. Commercial Service: International company background checks
  • Top 12 countries for Cyber Fraud (provided by Clearcommerce):
    1. Ukraine
    2. Indonesia
    3. Yugoslavia
    4. Lithuania
    5. Egypt
    6. Romania
    7. Bulgaria
    8. Turkey
    9. Russia
    10. Pakistan
    11. Malaysia
    12. Israel