Brexit uncertainty is why we don’t sell on European marketplaces. Discuss.

By Dan Wilson February 13, 2018 - 10:42 pm

One of the most effective ways of growing your ecommerce enterprise is to start selling internationally. Not only does it greatly expand your customer base but there is huge demand for UK goods from European shoppers who are keen to buy British. But is Brexit uncertainty holding you back?

Obviously you can enable your own independent online shop to take orders from overseas shoppers, but plugging into an existing marketplace is the easiest and quickest way to make your goods available to international customers.

And there is so much more to the European marketplaces scene than the titans of eBay and Amazon. Not least because in some countries neither eBay or Amazon are the top performer. As an example, in Poland the biggest marketplace is Allegro followed by Zalando.

In the past few weeks we’ve been compiling profiles of marketplaces in Europe and further afield. You can check out the gazetteer here.

And several things have become obvious. Firstly, there is a huge variety of options. Some are pan-European, others occupy specific verticals and niches and there are numerous business models. Secondly, many of them are keen to make it easy for UK merchants to make their products available to local shoppers. Some even offer discounts via the UK government to entice you to sell.

So what about Brexit?
As it stands, at time of writing, there is still great uncertainty about the terms of the UK’s withdrawal from the European Union. Key issues of direct and daily concern to ecommerce merchants trading with other member states include the terms settled regarding access to the single market and also the UK’s involvement (or not) in a customs union arrangement. There is no clarity yet.

We don’t think that Brexit uncertainty should deter merchants from dipping a toe in the water and experimenting with selling on European marketplaces. Brexit is, at the very least. one year away and a transition period up to 2020 seems likely. It’s too good an opportunity to hold off on indefinitely and we urge you to explore the options.

Do you agree?

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