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Insight: 15% of UK shoppers buy from overseas every day

New research has revealed that UK consumers are increasingly looking overseas when shopping for fashion items.


Insight: 15% of UK shoppers buy from overseas every day

New research has revealed that UK consumers are increasingly looking overseas when shopping for fashion items.

The study by delivery management company Whistl found that 34% of shoppers regularly make a purchase from abroad, with 15% buying something online from an overseas retailer at least once a week.

The US and China accounted for the top five international sites for UK consumers. These included China-based AliExpress and Dealextreme and USA-based Borderfree, Macy’s and Newegg.

Men were found to be more likely than women to shop with an overseas retailer, with 79% having made a purchase in the last year compared to only 66% of women. For many men, purchasing from an overseas retailer was seen as a way of securing a product earlier than the UK release.

Meanwhile, women were more likely to shop from China than any other overseas country, with 47% having purchased an item from the country in the last 12 months. In contrast, men were shown to be more likely to shop from American retailers with 47% reporting they had bought an item from the US in the same period.

However, almost a third of women said they were dissuaded from purchasing items from overseas retailers due to extended delivery times.

The biggest market for overseas retailers in the UK was shown to be the 25-34 age group, with over half shopping with an overseas retailer at least once a month and one in 10 doing so every day.

UK businesses were also found to be cashing in on international opportunities with 81% of UK online business owners saying the offered overseas delivery options. Some 37% were found to be providing European delivery options and 44% worldwide delivery options.

Melanie Darvall, director of marketing and communications at Whistl, said: “It’s clear from this research that there is an opportunity for businesses both in the UK and abroad to maximise sales opportunities by offering borderless deliveries. Many are already taking advantage of this however and as online shopping continues to grow even more businesses will be able to tap into this market.”

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