Global eCommerce Takes Off

2010 is positioned to be a record year for Web retailers, with industry analyst eMarketer projecting US eCommerce to climb by 12.7% to $152 billion this year. Although this figure is impressive in itself, the bigger story is the massive international market still left to be tapped.

With only 1 in 5 online consumers living in the US, global eCommerce could completely eclipse US sales in the next few years. China alone has over 384 million Web users, a growth of nearly 15% since 2008.

International eCommerce is both a significant opportunity for US retailers and a complex undertaking. Implementation must address complicated issues like import/export regulations, tariffs and duties, global channel conflicts, multiple languages, and currency exchanges.

Companies entering the global eCommerce marketplace must be both technologically and culturally savvy, respecting country-specific trade laws as well as regional customs and languages.

To penetrate global markets, an eCommerce platform must offer payment options that mirror the conventions already in place in that country, while respecting complex trade and commerce laws that govern commerce across national borders.

Effective international eCommerce successfully addresses international payment options, provides heightened security against fraud, and handles multinational-specific issues relating to customs, fulfillment, and international returns. It must also provide content that is translated accurately and blends in with the unique culture and business climate of the region.

Global eCommerce is positioned to grow exponentially in the next decade and US businesses must be ready. It's essential to have an international eCommerce strategy in place today in order to take advantage of this rapidly-expanding market in the years to come.