Affordable delivery key to UK retailers boosting cross-border sales, new eBay Enterprise report reveals

Consumer survey ranks top considerations, and turn-offs, for European shoppers

London, 16 September 2015 – Affordable delivery has the biggest impact on a shoppers’ willingness to buy from an overseas retailer, according to new consumer research* released by eBay Enterprise today to help UK retailers boost their overseas sales in the run-up to Christmas.

eBay Enterprise’s ‘Buying Across Borders’ report asked shoppers across Europe to rank the factors that have the biggest impact on whether or not they buy items from overseas retailers. It found the five biggest shopper “turn-offs” on making international orders are:

1. High delivery cost (80%)
2. Unavailability of preferred payment method (74%)
3. Poor product information, including images, text and video (68%)
4. Long delivery time (64%)
5. Price difference due to exchange rate (57%)

Commenting on the report’s findings, Enda Breslin, European Head of Business Development, eBay Enterprise said, “European consumers are increasingly considering overseas retailers as part of their online shopping mix, and it’s expected that EU cross-border shopping will tip £28.5bn by 2018**, but lack of delivery and payment options, as well as poor product information, could be harming some UK retailer’s sales prospects in the region.”

When it comes to buying from abroad, the report reveals that the purchase considerations of European shoppers depend a lot on basket size. Three quarters (74%) of European shoppers are influenced heavily by the availability of after-sales services, including returns, when buying high-end, luxury items from overseas, whereas only one quarter (27%) treat it as a priority when buying lower value goods like DVDs, books.

The report also found that shoppers buying higher-value, luxury items from foreign retailers are generally prepared to pay more for delivery and wait longer for their items to arrive than shoppers buying cheaper, “convenience” goods, highlighting the opportunity for retailers to up-sell premium delivery services on higher-value international orders.

Breslin continued, “Just like domestic consumers, cross-border shoppers also want different services, delivery speeds and price points depending on what they are buying. It comes down to choice; retailers that invest in providing a range of delivery options, payment methods and detailed product information will be able to up-sell premium services to those prepared to pay for it, without turning off those shoppers happy to compromise on service for a lower price.”

“Ultimately UK retailers are not only competing with other retailers that sell cross-border, but with local players too, and it’s not a level playing field. Success overseas is about striking the right balance between the opportunity and cost of localisation,” he concluded.

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