New Articles
  August 21st, 2015 | Written by

Global Cross-Border B2C Ecommerce Growing at Double-Digit Rates

[shareaholic app="share_buttons" id="13106399"]


  • Global online shoppers buy directly from foreign online merchants for better product availability and prices.
  • Clothing and footwear were most purchased by global online shoppers last year.
  • Amazon’s cross-border sales nearly doubled in 2014.

A new report from market research company predicts that the value of purchases made directly by online shoppers across national borders will grow by double digits over the next five years.

The research projects that B2C ecommerce will see accelerating growth rates until 2017, when it will decline slightly, while still maintaining double-digit growth.

According to, global online shoppers are motivated to buy directly from foreign online merchants due to better product availability and prices. Hindrances to cross-border purchases include customs charges, higher shipping costs, and longer delivery times. Clothing and footwear were the number one product category most purchased by cross-border online shoppers across all global regions last year.

Asia-Pacific will become the largest region in global cross-border online retail, according to the report, reaching a share of 40 percent of all cross-border sales in the next few years. Close to one-third of online shoppers in China have made purchases across borders, and China-based ecommerce marketplace AliExpress of Alibaba Group is a popular destination for online shoppers in countries like Brazil and Russia.

Alibaba’s competitor also strives to participate in the cross-border boom, having opened a global marketplace for overseas merchants to sell to China and having launched a website targeting Russian online shoppers.

Cross-border online shoppers in Canada and Latin America last year primarily bought from U.S. online retailers. The most popular way of engaging in cross-border trade for U.S. companies was through marketplaces such as Amazon. Amazon reported that, in 2014, cross-border sales on its marketplace nearly doubled.

Online merchants from the UK are popular targets for cross-border online shoppers worldwide as well, with cross-border shipping accounting for nearly a quarter of online orders dispatched from the UK at the end of 2014. Generally, cross-border online shopping was more intense between the EU member states than between the EU countries and non-EU countries, but EU authorities are undertaking efforts to further spur cross-border online shopping, seeing the benefits both for consumers and the businesses.