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Know the market: United Kingdom

Know the market: United Kingdom

After the Brexit, you may be unsure about expanding into the UK. What about the regulations? What does the UK customer want? How does shipping work? What do you need to pay attention to? In this blog post you will read more about the UK market, the buying behavior of UK customers and shipping options. 9% of e-commerce in UK involved a purchase from abroad, but for fast delivery 26% are willing to pay more. So if you can guarantee fast delivery it is certainly interesting to enter the UK market.

Top 3 foreign online purchases:

  1. China
  2. United States
  3. Germany

Top 3 product categories:

  1. Clothing & shoes (29%)
  2. Beauty & health (21%)
  3. Electronics (16%)

Top 3 favorite payment methods:

  1. Payment card (31%)
  2. Credit card (30%)
  3. Digital wallet (Paypal, Allpay; 29%)

Figures: Crossborder e-commerce shopper research conducted by the International Postal Cooperation (IPC)

Shipping to UK

Since the Brexit, free movement of goods is no longer possible between the European Union and the United Kingdom. This means that shipments have to deal with VAT and possible import duties. This not only affects you as the sender, but also the recipient. Fortunately, many parcel services offer help. For example, with PostNL you can choose two solutions to simply continue shipping to the UK: either the recipient pays the VAT and import duties, or you as the sender do. In addition, there are things you need to take care of yourself, such as registering with the UK tax authorities, as the British have their own VAT, and applying for an EORI number. For more information, PostNL has a handy step-by-step plan you can go through.
Over 57% of Britons recycle their packaging, so keep in mind to use sustainable packaging when shipping to the UK.

The British customer:

95% want the package delivered to their home
77% use track & trace
74% think packaging should be recyclable
50% have a preference for sustainable delivery
29% expect to buy more from neighboring countries in the future