Global eecommerce is the fastest growing segment of internet sales. According online retail trade organization, Interactive Media in Retail Group (IMRG), sales from will surpass 1 trillion euro ($1.25 trillion) by 2013.
Ecommerce sales in 2011 grew by 690 billion euros ($961 billion). This represents a 20% increase compared to 2010.
International merchant accounts:
The US is still the largest ecommerce market, followed by the UK and Japan. Growth rates in these countries will slow to only 10-15% a year as the markets mature. Still, there are still big opportunities for international merchants that acquire customers.
China experienced a 130% yearly increase in ecommerce sales from 2010 to 2011. It’s easy to see how China will soon become the largest ecommerce market.
Regionally, Europe is the largest e-commerce market in the world. European ecommerce grew 19% in 2011, finishing the year at $307 billion, slightly ahead of North America at $297 billion. France, Italy, Spain, Russia, Turkey and Poland are projected to experience the greatest ecommerce growth in rates in Europe in the coming years.
Central and South America, particularly Brazil and Mexico, also represent significant areas of growth as economies stabilize and the middle class grows. The Middle East, particularly Israel and UAE, will also experience substantial growth in international ecommerce.
The real future of growth in ecommerce lies in international markets. With the slowing of growth in the US and European markets, companies that want to maximize sales are looking beyond national and regional borders.
In order to take advantage of international opportunities, it is important to have the right payment processing solutions in place. International merchant accounts give you the ability to capture more sales from global buyers and increase revenues for your business.
If you have a domestic merchant account, be sure that your payment processor allows you to accept international transactions. Surprisingly, many US processors will not allow international transactions. Others will limit the number of international transactions that can be processed to a small percentage of overall processing volume.
If your provider does allow international transactions, ask if multi currency processing is included. Multi currency processing displays the pricing of items in local currency. You will receive more orders because customers are familiar with their own currency, eliminating the need for currency conversion.
If you are targeting specific markets, consider establishing international merchant accounts in different parts of the world. This will enable you to take advantage of lower inter-regional interchange rates, ultimately saving you money on processing.
As domestic markets mature, global ecommerce offers you the greatest opportunities for growth.
If you are testing the market and want to use a domestic merchant account, be sure your processor allows international transactions. And provides dynamic currency conversion so buyers see the same amount on their credit statement as they do on your site.
Once you committed to an particular region, establish an international merchant account in that jurisdiction. Processing rates will be substantially lower for when your acquiring bank is in the same geographic region as buyers. And approval rates for card transactions will be higher.
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