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Old 01-09-2003, 11:31 PM   #46
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Join Date: Jan 2002
Location: Toronto, Ontario, Canada
Posts: 201
Default Some misconceptions...

Nice long thread here...but there have been a few conclusions that have been jumped to all too quickly.

First of all, shipping to the US from Canada is NOT more expensive. Go ahead, compare rates; Amazon will charge you $3/shipment and $1/item for books; Chapters will charge you $5/shipment and $2/item, CANADIAN. For those not willing to do the math, 1 book will cost $4 shipping from Amazon, and $4.51 (USD) from Chapters. That's a pretty negligible difference.

As a side note, in many cases it's actually CHEAPER to ship internationally (to the US) from Canada than it is to ship domestically. When I was setting up a B2B exchange for ski & snowboard goods three years ago, we found in our research that we could ship a pair of skiis to California for LESS than it would cost us to ship it to Regina (about two thirds of the distance). The reason? Volume - there's way more shipments going south than there are going west.

Secondly, US customers will NOT have to pay GST. That's our bane, not yours. Nor will they have to pay PST, HST, QST, or any other tax levied on us as we make our way to the ice rink.

As for the USD/CAD issue, it IS fairly trivial to accept payments in USD directly. I've got a USD merchant account from a Canadian bank - and everything's run out of Canada. For that matter, I can't even accept payments in Canadian dollars, since we never bothered to set that up! Then you wouldn't even have to worry about the exobitant premiums your credit card company loves to charge you when you convert a currency. Somebody call Heather and tell her it'd be in her best interests to build in US currency acceptance. As much as I hate to condone the whole American Manifest Destiny thing, USD IS the currency of the Internet, and it's just good business to take it.

As another side note, Gerry Schwartz owns Onex, not Onyx. Onyx became OnX.com a few years ago (when all you needed was a .com in your name to have a great IPO - but they were a little late and the IPO bombed...). I actually worked at OnX.com just when they were IPOing...not a fun time. Though I did get to be really good at foosball.

But I digress. Anyway, most of the concerns about using Chapters.Indigo are overexaggerated. The only true stumbling block, in my mind, is the currency issue - which could prove quite, uhhh, taxing to your bottom line.
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