The most recent Gartner Magic Quadrant for Digital Commerce was released in June 2018. The study analyzes the strengths and weaknesses of platforms available to merchants and their ability to assist with “execution and completeness of vision” in creating shopping experiences. For Shopify merchants it details some of the strengths and weaknesses afforded by the various services that Shopify offers via subscription.
As Shopify builds their merchant base out, they have accrued >$350MM in annual GMV processed through their platform. While Gartner points out Shopify’s strength in Total Cost of Ownership and Time to Market, the writer highlights some of the issues Shopify merchants find in scaling up their business operations on the Shopify platform.
One issue that SmartOSC is keen to solve for our clients is the difficulty in fulfilling International demand from US based merchants. Penny Gillespie points out that:
“Although Shopify has customers in over 175 countries, 79% of its customers are in the U.S., the U.K., Canada or Australia. Support for local languages, currencies, search engines, social media, payments and shipping options is weak or nonexistent.”
The primary contributing factors, especially for smaller-scale businesses, are the complexities in international shipping and the lack of access to effective, trustworthy payment gateways. Shopify’s native payment system is functional, but restrictive in that it cannot process some forms of currency, while reputable third-party payment providers require thorough tax and business registration information, something that many small businesses may not possess or even understand.
Even for merchants operating in Shopify’s core regions, the logistics involved in sending products abroad can be challenging, even more so when considering the large product catalogs and order volumes in the B2B climate. SmartOSC specializes in comprehensively advising our clients on the more esoteric elements of growing their eCommerce businesses internationally.
SmartOSC has helped our clients increase ROI on their Influencer investments by focusing on converting more of the international demand that merchants are already creating. We know that influencers have established audiences across the world, and we also know that whether you are driving awareness with influencers or other top of funnel marketing activities, your brand is driving demand globally.
Ambiguous shipping policies can be confusing or frustrating to clients, and can seriously damage their trust in your brand and ultimately their decision to purchase from your site:
I know Kim Kardashian is selling tons of makeup, but it’s hard for an APAC consumer to rationalize spending >⅓ of the cost of their foundation on shipping. Brands must make it more convenient for their APAC shopper to choose their brand.
Aren’t global selling opportunities a fundamental expectation of eCommerce? The Asia-Pacific region remains the world’s largest retail e-commerce market with $1 trillion in sales in 2016 and double digit growth YOY into 2018. As a truly international Shopify Plus partner, SmartOSC is in a unique position to be able to conveniently and cost-effectively help our clients localize their websites, operations and ecommerce marketing to the APAC region.
We would welcome the opportunity to perform a site audit to see if our Go International solution for Shopify merchants is right for you. Additionally, we have been providing eCommerce solutions to some of the globe’s biggest brands since 2006 and would love the chance to contribute in a meaningful way to your brand’s ecommerce success.