Three quarters of UK online shoppers have bought from overseas retailers and marketplaces – driven, ironically, by price rises caused by the Brexit vote.
A survey commissioned by Pepper.com, a global social shopping community that includes HotUKDeals in the UK, reveals that 75% of British consumers have shopped online from retailers based overseas, with 25 per cent advising that they stick to purchasing from online retailers based in the UK.
Despite the high number of consumers shopping from the UK with online retailers based in another country, consumers in Italy and Germany are more likely to shop away from home with 77% of German consumers advising they have shopped online with retailers based abroad, 78% of Spanish consumers and 86% of Italian consumers.
For those British consumers ordering from online retailers outside of the UK, the main reason for choosing so, according to 60%, was the fact that the price was good – and supposedly better than that of UK retailers – even with shipping costs.
A third (32%) of shoppers said that they shopped online with retailers based overseas because they were looking for a specific product only sold by that retailer; 2% advised they did so simply to test out the process; while 7% admitted that they weren’t aware the site was not a UK based retailer.
Since the Brexit referendum, increased prices have already been seen across some food and alcohol products in the UK, with some consumer technology items also increasing in price since the vote, such as speakers. According to an article by Trusted Reviews in April 2017, the Sonos Connect rose from a suggested price of £279 in January 2017 to £349 in April 2017 – a 25.09% (£70) increase on the previous price. It also reported other price increases seen across products such as the iPad Pro, iPad Air, HTC Vive, One Plus 3 Smartphone and more.
Members of HotUKDeals vote hot or cold on deals so other consumers know that the hotter the deal, the stronger the offer based on factors such as price, product quality and the retailer selling the item. Members often post deals for overseas based retailers and international sites of global retail brands such as Amazon that get a lot of deal heat, highlighting that despite being an overseas seller/website, the deal is good and better than prices seen in the UK.
One recent deal posted by a consumer using HotUKDeals was for the Samsung Galaxy S8 that was available from Amazon.de for €499, which the consumer highlighted would be £449. This deal was voted hot by consumers (1418º) with those who purchased the smartphone advising that they were able to get free delivery and that the product was covered by Amazon’s EU warranty. Looking at data available on CamelCamelCamel, the cheapest the phone has been on Amazon.co.uk is £649 in January 2018.
Savvy shoppers find it increasingly easier to shop online with international sites, especially with the likes of Amazon where you can use your existing UK login details to shop at its foreign equivalents and use their returns policy which covers global store items. Consumers also feel more confident shopping abroad thanks to social commerce platforms like HotUKDeals where consumers share tips and answer questions any concerned shoppers have about the process.