Top Channels for UK Brands to reach US shoppers 

No primary category set

Pitney Bowes have just released new data from their BOXpoll survey revealing the top channels for UK retailers selling to US consumers. If you haven’t already guessed, the high level answer is search, marketplaces and Facebook, but it does depend on the age of US shoppers so it’s not as simple as it might appear on the surface. TikTok, YouTube and Instagram are also in the mix to different extents for different generations.

The findings demonstrate the sustained effectiveness of Search (e.g. Google, Bing) and online marketplaces. Almost one in three (30%) US online shoppers surveyed say they are most likely to discover UK brands through these two channels, while one in four (24%) discovers British brands through advertising on Facebook. 

Influencers are more popular with millennials and Generation Z  than any other age group. Almost one in five millennials is most likely to find UK brands through Instagram influencers (19%) or TikTok influencers (18%). Generation Z respondents are also responsive to influencers, with 12% discovering UK brands through Instagram influencers and 16% through TikTok influencers. Although these are the groups more driven than other age groups by influencers, Search remains their most common way of finding British brands, as cited by 30% of millennial respondents and 29% from Generation Z.

The latest survey follows BOXpoll data released in May which found one in four (25%) Generation Z shoppers and more than one in five (22%) millennials in the US buy from UK online retailers at least once a month, presenting an exciting new revenue stream for UK sellers.

The size of the US market and the appeal of British brands present a fantastic growth opportunity to UK retailers, but sellers must laser-focus their sales strategies and provide an outstanding cross-border delivery experience with fully-landed costs, real-time tracking and estimated delivery dates in order to succeed.

– Georges Berzgal, Senior Vice President International, Pitney Bowes Global Ecommerce

Top Channels – Preferences by Generation

Generation Z, born between 1997 and 2012

Search is the most commonly stated channel for younger US consumers to discover UK brands, cited by 29%, followed closely by TikTok advertising (27%). 21% say they find brands through YouTube advertising, and the same percentage discover UK through personal recommendations. One in five (20%) US Generation Z shoppers is introduced to UK brands through online marketplaces. 16% find brands through TikTok influencers and the same number through YouTube and Facebook advertising.

Millennials, born between 1981 and 1996

30% of US millennials in the poll find UK brands through Search, 29% through marketplaces and one in four (25%) is influenced by Facebook advertising. 21% cite YouTube advertising, and 19% find UK brands through Instagram influencers or TikTok advertising. 18% say their purchases are generated by TikTok influencers or Instagram advertising.

Generation X, born between 1965 and 1980

YouTube advertising is the most popular channel in introducing Generation X buyers to UK brands, cited by more than one in three (34%). Search and Facebook advertising were cited by 30%, and 27% cited online marketplaces. One in five (20%) were influenced by Instagram adverts. 17% cited recommendations from other people, and 14% were driven by TikTok advertising. Influencers had less impact on this group, with 12% saying Instagram influencers drove their purchases, and 8% citing TikTok influencers.

Baby Boomers, born between 1946 and 1964

Almost one in two (48%) in the BOXpoll survey find British brands through online marketplaces. Nearly one in three (29%) find UK sellers through Search, and more than one in four (26%) through Facebook advertising. 15% discover them through recommendations from other people.


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