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2018’s state of cross-border ecommerce in Europe

Cross-border ecommerce is becoming increasingly popular in Europe. Of the parcels bought cross-border last year, 38 percent were purchased from China. And consumers prefer more and more to shop across the borders using their smartphones.

These are some of the key conclusions from the Cross-border E-commerce Shopper Survey among 33,000 frequent cross-border online shoppers from 41 different countries, conducted by the International Post Corporation (IPC).

As said, most parcels that were bought cross-border came from China, followed by the United States (15 percent), the United Kingdom (10 percent) and Germany (9 percent).

China most popular cross-border destination for EU shoppers

In almost every country in Europe, China is the number one country from which online shoppers bought their most recent online cross-border purchase. In Iceland (31%), Norway (37%), Sweden (32%), Finland (35%), the UK (50%), Denmark (31%), France (43%), Portugal (45%), Spain (43%), Italy (35%), Greece (39%), Latvia (56%), Germany (43%), Hungary (61%) and Slovenia (43%) this is the case. Only in Ireland (UK: 59%), Belgium (the Netherlands: 33%), Luxembourg (Germany: 59%), Switzerland (Germany: 40%), Austria (Germany: 70%) and Cyprus (UK: 26%) other countries rank first.

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Cross-border ecommerce destinations for shoppers in Europe.
Cross-border ecommerce destinations for shoppers in Europe.

Overall, the most popular online retailers for cross-border purchases were Amazon (23 percent), Alibaba (16 percent), eBay (14 percent) and Wish (10 percent).

86% of the Dutch want orders delivered at home

When consumers from all around the world shop cross-border online, parcels needs to be delivered to them. The survey by IPC shows that delivery at home is the most commonly used delivery location. The global average is at 68 percent, with a range from 30 percent in Russia and a significant 86 percent in the Netherlands.

74% of Russians choose for delivery to post office

The next most commonly used delivery method is delivery to a post office, with 23 percent. This method is most popular in Russia, where 74 percent of consumers choose for this location. It’s also a popular delivery method in Iceland (62 percent) and Latvia (61 percent).

In the Nordics, they prefer to pick up at postal service point

In the Nordics however, picking up parcels at a postal service point is way more popular: in Sweden 67 percent, in Norway 67 percent, in Finland 56 percent and in Denmark 45 percent. Just compare this with the global average of 16 percent of shoppers that want to pick up their orders at a postal service point.

And 13 percent of global shoppers chose to pick up their online orders at a courier’s parcel shop. This method is especially popular among online shoppers in France (46 percent), followed by Denmark (29 percent). A parcel locker station (10 percent) was most commonly used in Finland (40 percent), Denmark (36 percent) and Latvia (35 percent).

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