Gone are the days when you would have to travel miles to market your product in your country or outside it. We are living in the most advanced era humankind has ever seen. Technology and the internet have enabled the biggest online business paradigm. You can sell whatever you want, to whomever you want, from wherever you want.
The world’s economy depends on international trade. The Covid-19 pandemic has caused a huge blow to the economy, lifestyle, and trade. In short, it left many in devastation. However, where certain businesses were, wiped off from the face of the earth, many survived due to their online resources.
To put it into simpler words,
Cross-border ecommerce is the selling of goods, products, or services online, from a website of a business, brand, or national store to the people (buyers) in another country. As a retailer, you can practice cross-border e-Commerce with another retailer or brand and a customer (B2C), or another business (B2B), or between two consumers or private individuals (C2C).
The last two years, followed by the Covid-19 pandemic, have seen huge momentum in cross-border ecommerce. An article published in Bloomberg estimated that China makes an average of 60 billion dollars from its cross-border ecommerce.
People have experienced huge losses and devastation in the past couple of years. A study by Visa stated that more than 90 percent of the business leaders are determined to expand their brand’s presence in the international market by 2024.
Although cross-border ecommerce seems like a great idea, every entrepreneur dreams of “launch the business internationally “and get recognized. However, it is easier said than done. International selling provides a vast opportunity for any business’s growth. However, the concept is underserved. Where one-third of the ecommerce sellers have their business blooming in the international market, two-thirds of the retailers, brands, and businesses are still struggling to get there.
That is because getting into the Cross Border Ecommerce Market is not easy!
A seller needs to overcome certain legal challenges and hurdles before they get their business on the global ecommerce table. To capitalize on a lucrative international market, it is time that you up to your cross-border ecommerce game. Because as compared to domestic e-commerce, studies have shown that cross-border e-commerce has the potential to grow exponentially by 20-25% each year.
The cross-border ecommerce market has fluctuated. Zion Research published a report that estimated the international e-Commerce would reach a whopping 4 trillion US dollars, given that it hit 562 billion US dollars in 2018. Hence, an expected increase in the compound annual growth rate- CAGR by 27.4%.
However, there are certain factors to be looked into more depth. Such as, what has given rise to such extraordinary cross-border e-Commerce growth?
The exponential increase in the use of the internet and smartphones globally has positively affected the B2C e-Commerce market. People prefer to buy and sell from their comfort zones because when you have technology at your disposal, why not! Apart from the tech-savvy devices, cross-border e-Commerce has become legally easier and effective by forming legal agreements between countries, like the one signed by China and Europe (the China Free Trade Area and European Free Trade Agreement).
Every business is built on a strategic framework. Similarly, you cannot simply jump on the cross-border ecommerce bandwagon. Instead, you have to play by the rules and anticipate possible challenges your business might encounter shortly. Once in the international market, the competition is going to be greater and more difficult.
To capitalize on the international e-commerce opportunities; business leaders must understand the consumer demand in each market. With ever-changing cross-border marketing dynamics, consumer trust is the key to improving future sales and generating lucrative revenue from each transaction.
Once any company has better knowledge about their target customers and their problems with international buying, they can overcome the challenges and win customers from any corner of the world.
To help the businesses thrive internationally, Forbes and other companies have highlighted the potential issues that a company might encounter when making it to the other side of the border.
For example, if you plan to expand your online business in or from Europe, you may need to understand their tax legislation better. There are different rules and policies for the pre-contractual, post-contractual, and withdrawal periods. Overlooking any which can be a huge setback for your brand.
These challenges highly affect your brand’s online presence and its sales. Although the issues may seem demotivating, they can be easily tackled with smart business planning and fail-proof ecommerce strategies.
Even though you have overcome all the challenges, and your business guarantees a seamless customer experience, cross-border ecommerce may still suffer.
Now that you know what obstacles might come your company’s ecommerce way, you may want to start your venture with thoughtful strategies and fail-proof solutions.
Conduct your research, acquire the usability testing by experimenting with the workability of your website so you know if your cross-border e-Commerce will survive or not. Keep in mind; Amazon failed to compete with other ecommerce of marketplaces in China in 2019.
You can hire freelancers and outsources the services like upgrading the site, uploading the content, answering the customer queries, etc. This way, you can get a few of your tasks off the table.
If you execute the strategies smartly and overcome the cross-border challenges, there is no stopping you. Cross-border ecommerce is a highly lucrative yet tricky international marketplace, where you need to be prepared for the worst. If you are determined to launch your brand internationally, ensure a seamless user experience. Modify your ecommerce business with the right sourcing of products and build a user-friendly online website and shopping store.
Cross-border ecommerce can positively affect international trade by creating more job opportunities, evolving supply chains, and enhancing small businesses growth. Only when done the right way.
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