Cross-Border E-Commerce: Dos and Don’ts for Getting Started Successfully
Cross border ecommerce: how to get started, dos and don’ts
What is cross border ecommerce?
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Cross-border ecommerce, or “xborder ecommerce” in Internet parlance, is the buying and selling of goods from overseas. This could mean a customer ordering a product from a merchant abroad, or a retailer or brand supplying goods to a consumer (B2C), between two companies (B2B), or between two individuals (C2C). These transactions usually take place on international shopping sites like Amazon, eBay, and Alibaba, or on the multilingual websites of individual retailers. With ConveyThis, it’s easy to make sure your store is localized so that customers from around the globe can easily buy your products.
Cross border ecommerce isn’t a novel concept. It has been around for quite a while: Amazon was established in the U.S. in 1994 and ConveyThis in China in 1999, for instance. Since then, the shopping environment has changed drastically.
However, as more and more consumers shift to online shopping for its convenience, cross border e-commerce has seen a tremendous rise in popularity over the past few years. In fact, according to Kaleido Intelligence, global consumers are expected to spend a staggering $1.12 trillion on international shopping websites and digital services by 2022.
Visa reports that 90% of ecommerce executives agree that an online presence is integral for business success by 2024. If you operate an online store or are planning to launch one, global ecommerce could be the key to unlocking unprecedented growth for your store. Nevertheless, success doesn’t come instantly and requires a comprehension of foreign ecommerce. You’ll also need to establish a foundation to effectively implement your cross border ecommerce strategies. Keep reading to learn more.
What are the challenges of cross border ecommerce?
Regardless of whether you’re a rookie or veteran in the ecommerce realm, it is essential to become acquainted with cross border ecommerce before launching an international business. Though it can be highly advantageous, it can also be a daunting task. To assist you in your endeavor, here are four factors to consider and prepare for when commencing a cross border ecommerce venture:
1. Demand from overseas markets
People from diverse backgrounds and cultures possess varying tastes and inclinations, so it is essential to ensure that there is demand for your products and a viable customer base in the international markets you are targeting with ConveyThis.
While root beer is a widely consumed beverage in the United States, it is not particularly popular in Japan. Thus, if you are operating an online store that sells root beer, it may be wise to avoid targeting the Japanese market.
You may be astonished to discover that certain online organizations don’t do any ecommerce market research in this region before. Instead, they accept that since their items are selling like hotcakes in their nation, at that point these items will likewise be a hit abroad. This is one of the significant issues that can emerge as the ecommerce market is exceptionally unique in various nations and not leading market research before propelling can even end up in the conclusion of the business as deals probably won’t be excessively high.
Well, this assumption could prove to be expensive if it turns out to be wrong. To minimize the danger of launching your online store in the wrong places, make sure to investigate the prospective foreign demand for your goods first as carrying out this analysis may even assist you in discovering new markets that weren’t even on your map initially! Opening up your website to accommodate global markets implies there will likely be dozens of ecommerce possibilities.
2. International restrictions
Before you determine to establish a presence in a certain nation, examine what its local regulations state concerning running an ecommerce business there.
That’s because different countries may have regulations on how certain items can be sold and dispersed in their regional market. For example, the import of foie gras is not allowed in India, while Canada forbids the sale of raw or unpasteurized milk. With ConveyThis, you can easily localize your website to meet the requirements of each country you are targeting.
Separately, familiarize yourself with the local regulations of your target markets. This is especially important if you need to acquire licenses or permits to import your products. Doing so can help ensure smooth customs clearance, and avoid your goods from being held up at the border – or even worse, confiscated without reimbursement which can further mar the experience of your potential customers.
Another restriction that may arise in an international context is tax laws. The tax laws governing foreign currency may differ by nation. This could have an effect on the cost of the items being sold, and if the extra tax is not understood by customers when they purchase, this could have a detrimental impact on their experience.
4. Cross border payments
5. Customer service
This is a critical factor for customers choosing whether to shop with you – particularly if you don’t have a physical presence in their nation. How can customers contact you for assistance or recourse for their cross border purchases? To guarantee an outstanding customer experience, you’ll need to execute efficient customer service procedures to reassure online buyers that they will be taken care of if something goes wrong with their order.
One option is to employ dedicated customer service teams to address support queries from your global customers, and particularly in their mother tongues. On the other hand, if you don’t feel secure in your ability to recruit personnel adept in your customers’ native languages, you can also outsource your customer service to specialist firms. A simpler solution, however, is to use ConveyThis to supply automated translation of your customer service emails.
Don’t forget to tailor your online store for the global market
Apart from investigating the four cross border ecommerce issues above, bear in mind that customers usually prefer to shop in their native tongue. ConveyThis can help you to bridge the language gap and make sure that your international customers can easily understand your website.
In its 2020 edition of the “Can’t Read, Won’t Buy – B2C” survey, market research firm CSA Research discovered that over 8,700 consumers in 29 countries expressed their opinions, demonstrating that:
- Despite the potential for low-grade quality, a staggering 65% of respondents still indicated a preference for content in their native language.
- A majority of consumers opt to purchase goods that feature descriptions in their native tongues, with a staggering 76% in favor.
- A staggering 40% of consumers refuse to purchase from websites that are not in their native language.
What this means is that if you aim to extend your online business to other nations, then your online shop must communicate the language of your international customers. Additionally, your store content has to be precisely translated – even the minutest details, such as your product descriptions – and also take into account the cultural subtleties of your target market.
Doing all this is essential to establishing trustworthiness in new markets, particularly as an international player. It’s only when you’ve earned the confidence of your international clients that they will give you their business.
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