Your competitors may not be where you think. According to a Paypal / IPSOS report, UK is the first cross-border destinations for global shoppers in Europe (14%) following by Germany (10% > 1 in 10 of global e-commerce shoppers have bought from Germany).
What does it mean?
The considerable expension of marketplaces like Amazon, Alibaba, Wish, Rakuten, eBay… has completly changed the rules of the game for many “traditional” players (aka merchants selling consumer products only from their online-shop).
70 percent of consumers already made at least one international purchase each year (source Pitney Bowes). Today it is easier to find much more products from new merchants as marketplaces tackle the main barriers:
– shipping cost (marketplace fulfilment)
– language barrier
– currency concerns
– rough targeted marketing
– cost of customer acquisition
So why my customers are looking oversea?
Shoppers are attracted by the main following reasons (Paypal / IPSOS report):
– Product prices > 72℅
– Product is not available in your country > 49%
– I can discover interesting and new products > 34%
– Shipping fees are affordable > 24%
The main reason behind the motivation of the cheapest price is because the majority of the merchants are Chinese. As these merchants are mostly the same that selling to the brands, they can offer same quality of products but as a lower price by using the service of fulfilment provided for example by Amazon.
According to a report of JDN / Le Journal du Net, over 450 products among 15 product categories, 30% of those products have been sold by Chinese merchants.
Why should I care?
Compete with prices could kill your business, so put it aside. On the other hand, looking to the other reasons can offer opportunities for evolving your online-shop; how could you learn from this flight of potential customers to benefit for your online-shop.
This quick Todo list is a good start to define your plan:
– Understand who are your customers, did they already buy products abroad which could be on your online-shop? why did they buy abroad? you can run a quick survey with Google Forms to answer to these questions.
– Have a look at your competitors on Amazon, Alibaba, eBay… and analyse what products they have, what prices and where they are located.
– Start to investigate what products you could add to your catalog and will interest for sure your customers (remember what your customers have answered)
– Calculate the profitability
Furthermore it is important to understand that selling on Amazon doesn’t mean that you will multiplicate your revenue by 2. According to a report from Ecommerce Fuel, 70% of merchants declared their own online-shop as their biggest sales channel, while Amazon making up only 6.2% of their total revenue. On the other side, 20% of merchants related that Amazon was their primary channel making up 76% of their revenue.
Let’s do it!