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What to Learn From The Cross-border E-shopping Survey

Consumers in the US and UK are turning to international e-shops to get products at better prices. Recent figures show that up to 52% of shoppers have bought at least one product this way in the last year.

What to Learn From The Cross-border E-shopping Survey
Source: Depositphotos

These are the findings of a survey conducted by Nosto among a sample of 2,000 people in the United States and the United Kingdom. Although lower prices are the main attraction for 41% of consumers shopping abroad, other factors also play a crucial role. For example, 23% of shoppers were influenced by product exposure on social media, a figure that rose significantly among Generation Z (aged 16-24), for whom social media mentions were a major motivator.

Nearly 16% of consumers cited better product quality as a reason for shopping abroad, suggesting that price competitiveness is a more compelling factor than perceived quality in a cross-border e-commerce environment.

Source: Nosto

Are there any downsides for customers?

Despite the attraction of lower prices and the influence of social media, 92% of consumers are concerned about cross-border shopping. The most common concern, cited by 50% of respondents, is the potential difficulty of returning goods in e-commerce. This is followed by concerns about product quality (47%) and concerns about counterfeits (46%).

The data also shows a significant difference in trust between domestic and international e-shops, with 60% of respondents trusting international shops less than domestic ones:

  • Suspiciously low prices: 44% of consumers are wary of prices that seem too good to be true
  • Lack of transparency about fees: 41% are concerned about unclear information on cross-border fees and commissions
  • Unclear return policies: A further 41% are concerned about unclear return and refund policies
  • Uncertainty about delivery: 39% of shoppers are unsure about delivery times to their country

Source: Nosto

Building trust in cross-border e-commerce

Presenting authentic reviews and user-generated content, i.e. content created by users themselves (uploading photos, stories, videos, tagging on social media, etc.), can be a solution to customers’ main concerns about returns, quality and delivery.

To build consumer trust, international companies need to focus on social buy-in and transparency when selling online. This is backed up by the aforementioned survey, which found that 64% of consumers are more likely to trust a brand if they see positive reviews from other customers in their country. In addition, 55% of consumers said that they are influenced by photos and product reviews from people who have a track record of making a purchase, which is a testament to UGC.

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