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Cross-Border Online Shopping – 10 Tips to Make Sure Your Shopping Cart is Ready to Accept Overseas S

Is this the sleeping Elephant in the room?  A Neilsen research study commissioned by PayPal has just revealed that close to $5 billion is projected to flow into Australian retailers from overseas customers shopping online.  The same study showed that the combined cross-border online shopping this year between Hong Kong, Canada, China, Australia, the US, Germany and Britain will exceed $105 billion, with 94 million consumers regularly buying from overseas websites.
 
The main categories attracting cross-border shoppers are clothing, shoes and accessories ($12.5 billion), health and beauty ($7.6 billion), computer hardware ($6 billion) and home electronics ($5.4 billion).  How many cross-border sales is your online business generating?
 
The Neilsen report names Australia as one of six major online markets, with demand for Australian products set to triple to $16 billion over the next 5 years.  The report also predicts that around 7 million Chinese customers will spend $2.3 billion on Australian online retail sites this year and 6 million US shoppers will spend $2.1 billion.
 
The reality is that as an online retailer you cannot ignore the massive opportunities that overseas shoppers present to your business.  So what are you doing about attracting these overseas shoppers?  
 
Tips:
 
1.     Do you allow overseas IP addresses to access your site?
 
2.     Is it worth establishing a domain name in key international markets to assist local search activity?
 
3.     How are you marketing your site to overseas shoppers?
 
4.     Do your products align with the values in other Countries?
 
5.     Do you have foreign languages pages for your main non-English speaking markets such as Google translate?
 
6.     Does your site talk about selling to overseas shoppers in some of the content sections?
 
7.     Do you have set delivery time frames for key Countries?
 
8.     Does your shopping cart allow international packaging and delivery and insurance for international freight?
 
9.     Does your cart allow international payment methods?
 
10.  How does your business handle returns for international shoppers?
 
Selling to overseas markets is not suitable for every online retailer, but as the figures from this report that was only released on Monday show, the volume is significant and the growth predictions are astronomical, so it is definitely a market that could prove very opportunistic for a many Australian online retailers. 
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