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Britain’s retail e-mpire: International opportunities for UK ecommerce businesses

Last week OC&C Strategy Consultants and Google released a compelling report looking at the scope and potential of ecommerce for retailers. It’s clever name – Britain’s e-mpire – hints at possibilities. It predicts that by 2020 international sales will rise three times faster than domestic sales and account for 40% of all sales, up from 14% in 2012.

The report found that the majority of non-UK searches are coming from Western Europe, the US and Asia. It is considered that Western Europe represents a good growth market for UK retailers, as there are fewer barriers in place. As such the report estimates that by 2020, Western Europe will account for £9.8bn of online sales. So, it looks like ecommerce, which has already revolutionised the retail sector, is set to be the gift that that keeps on giving.

Brands will want to make the most of these growing markets. Online marketing is the most effective way for them to do this. In turn, this represents a great opportunity for the performance channel. Professional publishers with a strong and trustful brand are the backbone of every etail performance program. But to date, very few have been prepared to work across borders. Instead, the majority have very much kept themselves to themselves, preferring to operate within their local market.

The results of last week’s report indicate that by staying local, many publishers could well be forgoing significant growth opportunities. Surely for dynamic, tech driven publishers internationalisation is a must to help not only drive growth but also assist with refinancing high infrastructure investments.

Networks too have a role to play. As the incubators of innovative publisher models, we are constantly looking for compelling new channels we can offer advertiser partners to help accelerate their growth.

When looking to expand marketing activity outside of the domestic market it is important to be mindful of small, but important, variations in approaches across different regions. Considerations like payment methods, brand awareness within the market, ability to respond to customer demand and ensuring that the right supply chain is in place are all important factors that can determine success – or failure.

There are exciting times ahead for British retailers. And with the right foresight, the performance channel can help etailers to maximise new market opportunities and grow their own businesses at the same time.

Dorothea von Wichert-Nick

Dr. Dorothea von Wichert-Nick is CEO of affilinet and member of the board at Sedo Holding AG. As CEO, Dorothea von Wichert-Nick is in charge of strategy, innovation management, marketing, sales and customer service across the affilinet group. Dorothea’s work focuses on strengthening the leading role of affilinet, increasing productivity and fostering the internationalization of affilinet, thus helping to shape the performance market.

Prior to joining affilinet, she was Managing Director at Solon Management Consulting, an international management consultancy focused on Telecom and Media. Her work included the development of new business models for European media and telecommunications businesses and a broad range of M&A projects.

During her career she has also managed strategic European market research at Deutsche Telekom and has been a researcher at the Fraunhofer Institute for Systems Engineering and Innovation Research.
Dorothea is an industrial engineer and has a PhD in economics.

Her philosophy is that successful management means broadening your horizons and inspiring people.

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About the Author

Dr. Dorothea von Wichert-Nick is CEO of affilinet and member of the board at Sedo Holding AG. As CEO, Dorothea von Wichert-Nick is in charge of strategy, innovation management, marketing, sales and customer service across the affilinet group. Dorothea’s work focuses on strengthening the leading role of affilinet, increasing productivity and fostering the internationalization of affilinet, thus helping to shape the performance market. Prior to joining affilinet, she was Managing Director at Solon Management Consulting, an international management consultancy focused on Telecom and Media. Her work included the development of new business models for European media and telecommunications businesses and a broad range of M&A projects. During her career she has also managed strategic European market research at Deutsche Telekom and has been a researcher at the Fraunhofer Institute for Systems Engineering and Innovation Research. Dorothea is an industrial engineer and has a PhD in economics. Her philosophy is that successful management means broadening your horizons and inspiring people.

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