Almost half of online shoppers look abroad

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Nearly half of online shoppers in the UK have placed an order with an e-tailer based outside the UK, according to the latest eCustomer Service Index results.

The study suggested that price and availability are driving cross-border shopping among UK online consumers. Some 60% of the respondents who have shopped cross border said they chose to purchase with a retailer outside of the UK because of better prices, while another 60% said they made the purchase because they couldn’t get the product they wanted here in the UK. Another 18% stated their purchase decision was driven by better products on offer.

Clothing, footwear and jewellery are the most popular items to purchase from a retailer abroad, followed by music, books and gifts.

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The majority of UK consumers spend up to £50 per transaction with international retailers. Two thirds (64%) of cross-border shoppers who have purchased clothing, footwear or jewellery have spent up to £50, while a similar number have spent a similar amount with retailers outside the UK when purchasing gifts.

Derek Eccleston, commercial director at eDigitalResearch, said, “Cross border shopping is not only a huge opportunity for UK retailers to expand their customer base and following across the globe, but can also be seen as a threat as more non-UK retailers look to enter the market. Our results show that purchasing with international brands is mainly driven by price and product availability, and therefore UK retailers need to ensure that they offer an exceptional customer experience to all customers around the world to encourage individuals to spend their hard earned cash with them.”

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