The second edition of the International Post Corporation (IPC) cross-border ecommerce shopper survey has found Amazon, eBay and Alibaba account for two-thirds of cross-border purchases.
Chinese consumers are more likely to shop online than consumers in any other country, said IPC, with 36% shopping online at least once a week. The survey indicated that clear information about delivery charges, free returns and free delivery over a particular value are the most important drivers for cross-border online shoppers.
Consumers seem to be more willing to pay for delivery of a tracked item that takes 5-8 days that an untracked item that takes 3-4 days.
China is the most popular market for consumers around the world to shop from, accounting for 26% of most recent cross-border purchases, followed by the US (16%), Germany (15%) and the UK (15%).
The US and China are the main markets cross-border shoppers bought from in Asia Pacific and Canada. China is the overall favoured market for Europeans, but differences are seen in Luxembourg, Belgium, Austria or Switzerland where cross-border shoppers mainly bought from neighbouring countries with a shared language.
The top four categories bought cross-border are clothing, footwear & apparel (33%); consumer electronics (21%); books, music & media (14%) and health & beauty (13%). Goods ordered online cross-border are mostly low-weight and low-value items, with 45% weighing less than 500 g, and 16% valued less than EUR 10, with a further 40% valued between EUR 10 and EUR 49.
Most cross-border purchases had free shipping. 59% of respondents received free shipping for their most recent cross-border ecommerce purchase. Chinese consumers benefited the most from free shipping (78%).
70% of cross-border online shoppers were offered tracking and 88% used it, mostly in the interim stage to check on delivery progress. Almost three-quarters of shoppers used the post for their most recent cross-border purchase. Overall, 87% were satisfied with their delivery experience. Overall, 30% of purchases included a free return label. Only 6% returned their cross-border purchase, mostly using the post for this return.