Economy International vs. Standard International. Which is better for your eCommerce Store?

Economy shipping vs standard shipping

With an increasing number of eCommerce businesses joining the retail revolution, the logistics industry has also stepped up with faster and more affordable shipping. 

Shipping is crucial while running a retail business as it helps bring your products to customers through a streamlined shipping process.

It is never easy to choose between delivery time and cost. Ultimately, optimized delivery is the secret key to a retail business’ success. 

In this blog, we will compare between Economy international and standard international shipping, including their key features, delivery times, and factors to consider. 

Economy International Shipping

Economy international shipping refers to the most affordable way of shipping to overseas destinations. 

It is a common service option available with carriers and is a cost-effective option if you are looking to transport bulky and fragile items internationally but not time-sensitive. It’s the slow and steady version of shipping instead of express pace.

Key Features of Economy International Shipping:

Low Shipping Costs

After browsing various product categories and even after adding to the shopping cart, many consumers abandon their carts due to high shipping charges. Regardless of how attractive an item looks, high shipping costs tend to drive customers away. 

Nearly 69.57% of online shoppers abandon their shopping carts due to a rise in shipping charges. However, shipping charges in Economy International are low and affordable.

If you have a limited budget for your parcel shipping, economy shipping is the best option for low cost. 

Lengthier Delivery Time

Economy international shipping generally delivers orders between 8 and 15 days, a little lengthier than standard or express international shipping. 

Although there could be a little delay in the delivery, it is worth it due to its cost-effectiveness. You can send gift items and other non-urgent orders through economy shipping. 

Easy to Access

Most carriers provide Economy International shipping service, which makes it easily accessible to many customers.

Lesser Efficiency Tracking 

Studies show that more than 52 percent of online shoppers have no idea about the whereabouts of their orders. Without knowing the order status, customers can’t cancel it. 

It is even more difficult to track bulk orders through Economy International. This lack of efficiency in tracking shipments could affect your business.

Order Consolidation 

In Economy international shipping, several packages are consolidated into one shipment. This lowers overall logistics costs.

Non-Urgent Shipping

This type of shipping is ideal for orders that are not time-sensitive. This enables senders to save money without compromising on quality.

What is the Delivery Timeline of Economy International Shipping?

Although economy international shipping is the most affordable shipping option, there is a trade-off regarding the delivery time. Economy international shipping usually has slower transportation modes that are inexpensive.

In this shipping, the parcels go through consolidation and pass through various warehouses. On average, orders take 7-20 business days depending on the delivery address. 

Standard International Shipping

Standard International shipping is another regular shipping service that provides a balance between affordability and cost. This shipping is not comparable with express shipping which requires higher shipping costs. 

On the other hand, the delivery turnaround time (TAT) of standard international is faster than economy shipping, which makes it an ideal logistical solution. 

What is the Delivery Timeline of Standard International Shipping?

Standard International shipping delivers orders faster than economy shipping. However, it’s slower than express or priority international shipping which delivers packages within a day and overnight. 

The estimated delivery time of standard international shipping depends on the carrier you choose and the destination country. For instance, FedEx takes a maximum of 5 days to deliver packages through standard shipping; DHL might take nearly 14 days. 

On average, standard international shipping takes between 6 and 10 days to deliver packages to the destination country.

Key Features:

Higher Shipping Costs

In regular international shipping, the costs for shipping products are typically higher than domestic rates. The pricing is largely determined by the size, weight, and dimensions of the package. 

Additionally, shipping costs can vary based on the destination country. For example, sending a package to the United States may incur higher costs compared to shipping to Canada. 

Faster Delivery Timeline

Standard International Shipping typically offers faster delivery compared to economy shipping, with deliveries usually taking 3-5 days. However, in some cases, delays of up to three to four weeks can occur due to customs issues and adverse weather conditions.

Efficient Order Tracking System

Standard International Shipping offers a full tracking facility. Usually, eCommerce businesses opt for standard shipping mainly for single shipments and not much for bulk shipments. 

Throughout the process, customers receive regular updates on their parcel’s journey, from the time it is picked up at the warehouse to its arrival at the destination storage facility.

The Difference between Economy vs. Standard International

Now that we have an understanding of these two services, the question remains: what differentiates them? 

Both standard ground and economy shipping provide cost-effective shipping solutions, yet each has distinct features and benefits that set them apart. 

Let’s explore the specifics of standard ground and economy shipping to figure out which option may be the most suitable for your needs.

Delivery Times

Standard international shipping generally provides quicker delivery times in comparison to economy shipping, typically spanning 6 to 10 business days. 

On the other hand, economy shipping is slower, often requiring a longer delivery window of approximately 5 to 14 business days. If prompt delivery is essential, opting for standard shipping may be the better choice.

Shipping Rates

Standard international shipping comes with a higher cost compared to economy shipping, yet it remains an affordable option. The specific rates depend on variables such as the size, weight, and destination of your package.

Opting for standard ground involves payment for expedited delivery service and optional features like package tracking. Conversely, economy shipping is still the most cost-effective choice, ideal for those seeking economical shipping expenses.

Reliability and Tracking Option

Standard international shipping is known for its reliability and improved tracking options in comparison to economy shipping. 

Customers using standard international services can typically track their packages, providing them with assurance and peace of mind.

Conversely, tracking may not always be accessible with Economy international shipping. In instances where carriers do offer this feature, its capabilities might be limited.

Area Coverage

Standard international shipping typically covers a wider geographical area. It can ship and timely deliver orders to more addresses in a country, including remote areas. 

While economy shipping also extends its services to many places, it may have restrictions on specific countries. 

Opting for standard international shipping might be the better choice when sending a parcel to a less populated area or a location far from major cities, ensuring the parcel reaches to its recipient.

Order Handling

Standard international shipping does more thorough package handling compared to economy shipping. The standard shipping option ensures that packages are handled with care, which reduces the risk of mishandling or damage. 

On the other hand, economy shipping may involve order handling with lesser care because of its lower cost and lack of time-sensitiveness in delivery. 

Therefore, if you want to send fragile or high-priced products, Standard international shipping might be the safer option for your parcel to reach its destination safely.

Things to Look at When Choosing Between Economy and Standard International

For sending parcels, deciding between economy and standard international shipping can pose a challenge. 

Considering a few essential features and benefits to select Economy international shipping over standard shipping can simplify this decision. Let’s look into these factors to pick the right option for your shipping requirements.

Type of Business

Considering the nature of the business is crucial when choosing a shipping option, as each company has unique needs. For example, an online store specializing in food items will need faster shipping due to the perishable nature of the products. 

Choosing slower shipping could result in spoilage of the food items. Another situation involves high-volume shipments. A bulk retailer may prefer cheaper shipping to maintain competitive pricing for its customers.

Customer Desires and Needs

When opting for a shipping service, you need to consider your customers’ desires and needs. Because meeting various expectations such as timely delivery and consistent service results in service satisfaction for your customers. 

By choosing the right shipping option that aligns with these expectations, you can ensure your customers are happy and loyal, which will eventually drive repeat business.


Through budgeting, you can manage the costs of your eCommerce business effectively. You can save significantly on shipping costs by choosing a more affordable shipping option that fits your budget. It will help your business stay financially sustainable and also provide reliable shipping services to your customers.

Volume and Shipping Frequency 

Considering your order volume and shipping frequency allows you to choose a suitable shipping option. If you ship orders frequently, you can take advantage of higher discounts on shipping rates. 

Destination and Distance

Considering distance and destination of shipping is important because it affects delivery time and cost. Sending orders to longer distances may need faster shipping to ensure timely delivery. 

Some shipping carriers may put restrictions or charge additional fees for longer destinations. Choosing the right carrier will ensure lower shipping cost and smooth delivery.

Economy International Shipping: Pros & Cons

Now you know everything about the economy international shipping service, here are the pros and cons of this shipping option at a glance:

Most affordable shipping optionNot suitable for urgent shipments
Reasonable rates for bulk shipmentsShipments may take longer
Ideal for sending low-value itemsNo efficient and proactive tracking option
Comes with standard packaging Not an ideal option for sending fragile items

Standard International Shipping: Pros & Cons 

Similarly, here are the pros and cons of standard international shipping at a glance.

Provides an ideal balance between shipping cost and timeShipping cost is higher than the economy international
Delivers packages faster than Economy shippingDelivery is not as fast as express shipping 
Provides tracking updates more frequently Not suitable for shipping time-sensitive items
Customer service is betterDoesn’t offer advanced tracking features

Closing Thoughts

Choosing Economy or standard international shipping depends on your business needs. Economy international shipping might be ideal for your business if you are not in a hurry to ship items and want to save money. 

Conversely, Standard International shipping could be a better choice if you need your orders to reach their destinations quickly, and also the cost will be relatively higher.

ShippingChimp offers low cost shipping to most international destinations. If you are looking to ship eCommerce orders to a global audience a, talk to us.

Revathi Karthik
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