The benefits for retailers that can deliver an efficient and appealing cross-border e-commerce offering in Europe are clearly evident. Today 40 percent of European Union shoppers shop online and sales in the 13 largest online markets in the EU are estimated to be €200 billion, growing at just under 20 percent per annum.
Customers empowered by smart phones and social networks leverage the Internet to research price, quality, service and delivery options, while sharing ideas and opinions along the shopping journey.
As many traditional retailers are focusing on making online pay domestically before tackling other European markets, they agree that multi-channel strategies offer the most promising path to profitable growth.
But online retailing incurs many additional cost impacts across core functions, from buying, merchandising and marketing, to planning, store operations and supply chain.
Typically, retailers have launched domestic online shops as a separate channel from their store-based business—which is why many struggle to deliver a consistent, multi-channel shopping experience that Europe’s consumers demand.