By adopting new technology, Tollit has managed to fully digitize the Norwegian customs clearance process, simplifying each step of the process including enabling a wide range of payment methods at your choice, all in collaboration with fintech challenger, Optin Bank.
Have you noticed a high number of returns from your Norwegian customers? Many Norwegians are tired of being surprised by sky-high and unpredictable customs fees when ordering goods from abroad, and simply decide to not pick up their goods on arrival.
End of uncollected and returned packages
In Norway parcels from abroad must be cleared through customs from the first NOK, and the rule has created major challenges for the Norwegian postal service, among others, which has a small mountain of uncollected parcels that no one picks up. The reason is often that the consumer has experienced a price shock, and therefore opts not to pick up the package that has been ordered. Often the total price has doubled, or worse, by the time Norwegian customs fees and VAT is added.
Customs clearance in a few minutes
A simpler, more predictable and not least reasonably priced and understandable customs clearance process has been long awaited. And what about the elaborated payment process and lack of payment options at your customer's choice? The Norwegian app Tollit has it all figured out and is ready to launch this autumn.
Tollit is a smart app that will make it easier and cheaper for Norwegian consumers to keep track of their customs clearance of shipments from abroad. Customs clearance is an expensive service today, where the consumer pays a hefty surcharge for the job the freight forwarder does. In addition, the consumers rarely know what they actually end up paying for - and hence ends up leaving the package uncollected at the post office.
The mobile phone is the heart of the transaction
This is where Tollit comes in. The app is responsible for digitizing the customs clearance and payment process, making it easier, faster and cheaper than with current methods. As a bonus, Tollit continues their work to enable a service completely independent of the freight forwarding agent, and with Optin Bank as a partner, the consumers can pay when it suits them - whether it is now or later.
The mobile phone itself is the heart of the transaction. Customers get a full overview of all costs of import, and freight forwarders will easily be able to integrate with the app and use this as a front-end when communicating payment orders and customs documentation to consumers.
Pilot project underway
Tollit is scheduled to launch during this autumn and is currently doing a pilot with a UK based online shop. The idea for the app came when the founder of Tollit, Kim Trengereid, was to pick up a package he had bought from abroad. Due to currency changes, it ended up just above the NOK 350 limit for VAT-free online shopping. As a result, the package became twice as expensive, and although his wallet became slimmer, Trengereid was an experience richer.
- My immediate thoughts at that time was: There has to be a better solution than this!
Trengereid believed that this could be solved without the frustrations he and many others in the same situation have experienced. The road from idea to reality could be reasonably short. He took the idea with him to co-founder and fellow Norwegian, Peter Skarbøvig, and together they have now developed an app where the goods are declared in a simple and straightforward way, customs cleared - and not least paid for - via mobile. Which in turn saves both the end-consumer and the freight forwarder time and cost.
Enhanced customer experience
For Tollit, Optin's white label payment solution was an obvious choice. Optin Bank is a technology driven bank that offers agile and flexible financial solutions.
Optin Bank's goal is to always be at the forefront of technology development to ensure the customer the very best products in relation to financing and payment solutions.
- Our focus is to increase the value of existing value chains with our flexible and easily integrated platform, and to enhance the consumer experience. The Tollit app is a great example of integrating an all-in-one solution, contributing to a disruptive, transparent and easy new solution, simplifying the entire shopping experience and solving customer problems. We are very thrilled and excited by partnering up with Tollit, says CEO Harald Dahl-Pedersen at Optin Bank.
Transparent and flexible for the customer
Another advantage of the Tollit app is that the consumer pays for the entire process in one place - everything from the purchase of the item, to customs and VAT, the actual customs clearance and shipping - without any surprises. The customers can choose whether they want to pay by invoice, installment, account, Vipps or card.
- It is a very flexible solution for the customers, which we know will be appreciated. We are the only company that offers exactly this solution in today's market, where everything is included. And we believe this will be safe, secure, easy and not least transparent for the consumer, say the two founders.
An app to save time, money and frustrations
Tollit 's focus has been to develop a technical platform providing a solid foundation for building a stable and flexible user experience.
- When the customer buys the item, they simply press the Tollit icon to clear the item. Then we will digitally obtain all information required to clear the item for the customer. Everything is adapted to the Norwegian customs tariff, so we have simplified the whole process - and everything is done in a few minutes. The package is ready for customs clearance when it arrives in Norway, as opposed to having a manual customs clearance. Since the entire process is digitized, it reduces the cost significantly. Our estimations indicate that we can save the consumer up to 70 percent of the cost, says Trengereid, who has initially chosen to focus on the popular nutrients segment.
- Part of the reason is that nutrients, including foodstuffs, is exempted from the Norway VOEC scheme, and transitional arrangement. When you purchase such goods, they still have to be cleared in the ordinary manner, and you must pay ordinary import duty, regardless of the value of the shipment.