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The Roar of Online Retail

Last updated on October 7th, 2016 at 02:25 pm

Where are the lions of online retail roaring?roar of online retail shopping

There’s a roar in the jungle of e-commerce shopping coming from Asia!

Here’s what it sounds like-

  • Giant ecommerce growth of 32% from $631.81 billion in 2014 to $835 billion in 2015
  • Massive $411 billion worth of transactions through the 7 largest online marketplaces, including Rakuten.com (Japan) and Alibaba Inc. (China).
  • Dramatic 54.5% increase in total online sales generated from the top 500 Asia E-Retailers.

Asia’s roar for e-commerce has been heard around the world, and international retailers are responding eagerly in their quests to reach Asia’s booming e-commerce market.  The bulk of the demand is coming from Chinese consumers that particularly like foreign goods.

Some steps taken by the Chinese government have made it easier for consumers to buy goods via internet overseas. One such step is the creation of free trade zones in several cities that provide fast clearance for small orders placed by Chinese consumers. There are several benefits in these free trade zones that enable warehouse facilities to have alternatives to reduce costs and fees.

Language and Cultural Challenges – Easier Website Translation & Localization of e-commerce sites

Efforts to reach new markets require new tasks, including adaptation of websites and online products to the cultures, languages, and preferred payments methods of your target markets. One of the first activities is to localize the content- not just translating your products to these new markets but also adapting them to their culture.

Be aware the challenge of updating your localized website to keep it in sync with the original site. New website translation technology has made this easier and less expensive than in the past, in particular translation proxy solutions. It is no longer necessary to recreate the website in other languages, as the new systems handle all the effort. Marketers only have to maintain their original site.

US Merchants are looking abroad

There are many U.S. merchants responding to Asia’s roar for e-commerce.  Are you among them?  If the Asian market is not already a part of your marketing strategy, now is the time to think about a plan of action to reach this powerful customer group, if that market makes sense for your business.    By doing so, you stand to gain massive exposure to the growing number of Asian online shoppers- including 357 million Chinese consumers who now buy online.

But take caution!  Success online in Asia entails careful assessment of marketing practice, logistics, language, culture and regulatory challenges in each Asian country.  As a first step, you need to sell in their language, so everything from retail websites, marketing campaigns to payment and shipment information must be in the local language of your target audience to create a relationship with your new customers.

This is a new frontier, but the sooner you start the quicker you will begin making strides and learning about these eager customers.

US Ecommerce, a Distant but Approaching Roar

While the growth of the Asian ecommerce market is especially phenomenal, the US ecommerce market has also remained consistently strong.  2015 marks the sixth year in a row in which e-commerce sales in the US have grown near or above 15%.  Below is a summary of annual US web sales from 2005 to 2015.

growth in US e-commerce web sales

With the continual advancement in technology and global trend towards cross border online shopping, we can expect online US retail sales to grow and at increasing rates.

Many US E-commerce merchants are also looking into the US Hispanic market as a way to test the waters in the Spanish language without getting into the complexity of cross-border e-commerce.   This has resulted in the gaining of loyalty and business of that consumer segment. Is this a good target market for you? Explore it!  Learn about your competitors and see who is already reaching the US Hispanic market.  The Hispanic population is growing faster than any other segment in the US.

Any Plans for multilingual websites and International e-commerce?

Do you want to capitalize on the global e-commerce trend by reaching new consumer groups abroad or in the US?  If so, we can help you.  We have extensive experience in helping clients communicate with international customers and the Hispanic market in the US. With our wide range of advanced website translation solutions, we are equipped to tailor a customized website translation approach for your international market and clientele.  We look forward to working with you in your own roar!

FloraY
FloraY
Flora was born and raised in New York to parents from Hong Kong and Taiwan. She has a degree in Accounting. She is fluent in Mandarin, and contributes a unique perspective as someone who was raised in 2 different cultures. She finds humor and opportunities to learn as she constantly searches for the balance between the East and West.