Shoppers make demands on cross-border sales

The majority (57 per cent) of online shoppers have made at least one online purchase from a company in another country in the last 12 months, and now they are demanding improvements in service as a result.

A survey of 2,035 online shoppers in the US, Germany, Australia and the UK was commissioned by parcel shipping specialist Logistyx Technologies.

In addition to the relatively high take-up of cross-border shopping, the research found a further 22 per cent of consumers have considered international purchases. And 43 per cent agreed or strongly agreed that doing more online shopping in general during the pandemic means they are now more willing to consider cross-border e-commerce purchases.

Clothing and footwear is the sector most likely to generate cross-border sales, with more than half (56 per cent) saying they are likely to order these. Next came sport, hobbies and leisure (44 per cent), followed by health and beauty (42 per cent), and consumer electronics, computers and phones (41 per cent).

However, many consumers continue to have a poor opinion of the delivery experience for international e-commerce and are less forgiving if things go wrong. For instance, 59 per cent of shoppers agree they are less likely to give a company in another country a second chance if they make a mistake with their order.

Around 66 per cent of respondents say they believe cross-border purchases will arrive later than promised, while 47 per cent think they are more likely to be damaged in transit. And not only do 69 per cent believe delivery charges will be higher for international orders, but 59 per cent think they will have to pay additional fees or duties which have not been made clear at checkout.

Product returns are one of the biggest concerns, with 73 per cent believing returns will be more difficult.

Geoffrey Finlay, CEO of Logistyx, said: “Returns appear to be a major pain point. While making them free may not always be feasible given the cost and complexity of international shipping, it’s important to make the process as easy and hassle-free as possible.”

He added: “Be clear about returns policies, provide returns packaging and labels with the original parcel, make booking a return quick and painless and ensure the refund is initiated as soon as the return is collected from the customer.”

Seven things online shoppers demand from cross-border purchases

A guaranteed free returns policy – 72 per cent

The ability to easily track their orders online – 71 per cent

A guarantee of no additional charges or taxes aside from those mentioned at checkout – 70 per cent

A guarantee that the order will be delivered on time, or money off purchase – 67 per cent

A local product servicing and repairs capability in home country – 64 per cent

A free telephone/webchat hotline in local language and time zone – 60 per cent

A buy-now-pay-later option after the product is received – 54 per cent

Source: Logistyx

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