E-commerce has transformed the world into an international marketplace. Now, buying products from across the globe is only one click away.
The growth of international e-commerce has been impressive. That’s why you need to consider this as a critical factor in expanding your business internationally.
If you do have an online business, expanding to the global e-commerce market should be a top priority. But this is often easier said than done.
In this post, we’ll be talking about the nine surefire ways on how to make an ecommerce website that will succeed in the international market.
Localize your e-commerce website
How does your site come off to international visitors?
Do you speak their language? Are you using their country’s currency?
Preparing your site for an international audience will require time and effort.
But if you’re planning to cater to buyers overseas, then this is something that you should do.
If you want your e-commerce store to be relevant to an international audience, then you need to customize your site to suit that particular market.
Create a flexible UI design
A single User Interface (UI) doesn’t necessarily fit all. For instance, in Spain, it’s common to have two names and two last names.
Also, when writing one’s name in Japanese, there are two different scripts, and there are some names where you have to use both.
Ensuring that you get this right is vital if you don’t want prospects to leave your site, frustrated, because they have a difficult time filling in their account or billing information.
Set up a competitive pricing strategy
Once you enter a new market, you must base your price on the local currency. As with any market, competitive pricing is vital. More than half of the customers pay more attention to products that have local prices.
Here are some factors that you need to consider when pricing your products on global markets:
- The cost to manufacture a certain product.
- Fluctuations in foreign currencies.
- The price that your international customers need to pay.
- The pricing of your competitors.
- Your tax environment.
Support different payment options
Buyers coming from different countries usually have different payment methods.
Usually, they would use Paypal, direct cards, credit cards, and cheques are the most common payment methods.
But if you want to cater to as many people as possible, you should be more than willing to accept a variety of payment methods.
So, do your research first. Most of these payment methods usually differ per region.
If you already know your target market, then it’s good to know the most common payment methods your target audience uses.
Provide efficient shipping solutions
Another thing that you should ensure is that your products are shipped safely and efficiently. Without the right distribution strategy, your expansion efforts will easily falter.
Remember that the customer experience isn’t just about delivering them the products. It’s also about shipping the products in one piece, in the most efficient way possible.
Also, keep in mind that your shipping costs may vary per region. Although you could save on some orders, some orders will cost a little bit more.
You should also avoid confusing your international customers with shipping fees.
For instance, you could offer your customers flat rates so that they’d know how much the product will cost them before you ship their order or purchase.
Prioritize website security and privacy
When developing an e-commerce site that caters to international customers, you need to understand how privacy and customer data work.
People need to know whether or not their privacy is protected. They need reassurance from you that their customer data is not being used for other purposes without their consent.
So, prioritize your website’s security and privacy to help ease those fears. You should also back your words and promises by investing in a technology that secures and protects your customers’ sensitive information.
You might also want to work with a team that will help you manage security and privacy-related costs.
Mobile e-commerce is an essential aspect of international e-commerce and the global industry as a whole.
Mobile apps, for instance, is a must-have for most e-commerce businesses. Although a mobile-friendly site is important, having a mobile app will leverage you from your competitors.
That’s because smartphone usage has dramatically increased over the last couple of years, especially with the younger generation. Shopping on smartphones has increased tenfold as well.
So, use this advantage to gain a larger audience with your mobile app, especially if your target market caters to younger people.
Expand on social networks
One of the biggest challenges that you must face if you want to expand to an international market is to grow a dedicated following or audience for your products. That is where social media comes in.
Social media is one of the best tools that you can use to generate a global following for your business. It’s also one of the means of localization that will embed your brand into people’s minds.
You might also need to craft specific content or campaigns if you are catering to a country or location relevant to your audience.
Research the most popular social media platform a specific country uses and expand your brand presence there.
Handling international returns
Returns are also part of the global e-commerce market. The best way to deal with returns is by knowing how to handle them properly.
Ensure that you have a clear returns policy on your website. That way, customers know your returns policy before they can consider making a purchase.
Apart from that, local fulfillment centers are also helpful in handling these returns.
Over to You
Going global is an exciting venture and can help you expand internationally in a variety of ways. So, it would help if you remained consistent and watch your results to ensure that this is the best path for you and your company