A recent survey by eShopWorld, a privately held Irish company headquartered in Dublin with offices around the globe that provides a technology platform for brands and retailers looking to sell online to global markets, found out that younger, digitally native consumers aged 25 to 34 are the group that most likely shopped online outside their home country in the past year. The Global Voices 2021: Cross-Border Shopper Insights study also found that overall, 68 percent of shoppers surveyed made e-commerce purchases outside their home country in 2020. The online survey was conducted in Dec. 2020 among more than 22,000 consumers in Australia, Canada, Chile, France, Germany, Mexico, Russia, Singapore, Turkey, the U.K. and the U.S.

Here are the study’s key findings:

  • Shoppers aged 25-34 were most likely (33 percent) to make 11 or more e-commerce purchases outside their home country in the past year. This was followed by 35-44-year-olds (32 percent) and 18-24-year-olds (29 percent).
  • Apparel (30 percent), toys (19 percent) and health and beauty products (19 percent) were the most popular product categories purchased by 25- to 34-year-olds in the past six months, according to the study.
  • 47 percent of respondents who spent more than $500 on cross-border e-commerce purchases in the past year were in the Millennial age group (ages 25 to 40), followed by Gen X (ages 41-56; 27 percent) and Gen Z (ages 18-24; 15 percent).
  • Gen Z (18-24) are most likely to shop directly on brand websites rather than marketplaces or a mix of brand and marketplace sites. About 29 percent of this group has made cross-border purchases directly from brands, compared to 23 percent of Millennials (25-40) and 23 percent of Gen X (41-56).
  • About 55 percent of non-U.S. consumers aged 18-34 have shopped on U.S. websites in the past 12 months, making the U.S. one of the most-shopped countries globally.
  • Payment by credit or debit card remains popular, but flexible payment options are gaining traction: About 72 percent of all respondents used a credit or debit card to complete their cross-border transactions. However, younger consumers are more likely to use the “buy now, pay later” option, with about 10 percent of respondents aged 18-24 (Gen Z) and 11 percent of respondents aged 25-34 saying they have used these flexible payment options to make purchases from international merchants.
  • Consumers of all ages are most likely to buy apparel cross-border. Still, Gen Z (18-24) and Millennials (25-40) are three times more likely to buy other categories, such as health and beauty items and luxury goods, than the oldest shopper group surveyed.
  • A localized online shopping experience is key to a successful cross-border e-commerce experience. The ability to shop on a website in the local language (34 percent) and local currency (34 percent), as well as the clear display of all fees, taxes and duties (33 percent), were the most important factors in the purchase decision.

Photo: © Igor Miske on Unsplash