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More retailers selling overseas, and with improved services

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More UK retailers are now selling overseas, with 67% now offering an international delivery service, new research suggests.

For its third International Ecommerce Delivery Report, Micros tested the service offered by 112 UK retailers, recruiting a panel of shoppers from 20 countries to place online orders.

They found that the choice of delivery options was increasing, while the cost to shoppers of ordering from international markets was, potentially, decreasing. Some 31% of those tested offered the choice of standard and express delivery services for international customers, up from 18% in 2012.

Some 34% of retailers now offer free delivery above a set spend threshold, up from 6% in 2012, they found, although the average delivery charge was £11.23.

Nick Landon, managing director at report sponsor Royal Mail Parcels, said: “The improvements in this year’s report are very encouraging. The fact that 31% of the retailers provide a choice of delivery options to overseas customers, while 34% offer free delivery over a certain order threshold, shows that retailers have been focusing on delivering the same quality of service to international shoppers that UK customers can expect.”

Other improvements found included the ability for 91% of customers to see delivery information about their country on the retailer’s delivery page, up from 73% in 2012. Address look-up functionality was now offered for international customers by 18% of retailers, up from 6% in 2012.

But only 37% of retailers enabled customers to change currency on the web site, and only 15% who lived in countries where English was not the local language were able to see the site in their own language.

Martin Hawkes, VP of retail at Micros, said: “The online channel has given UK retailers easier access to overseas customers, making international markets a key driver of future growth. Our research shows that many retailers are capitalising on that opportunity and honing their websites and customer propositions to attract overseas shoppers. There is still room for improvement, however.”

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