A world of opportunity is waiting

Your guide to selling internationally. Read on to learn more.

Your guide to selling internationally. Read on to learn more.

How to sell internationally

Whether you’re new to selling overseas or already a pro, it pays to have a plan in place. We’ve outlined five critical areas to consider when planning for international growth.

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Identify target markets for your business

Identify which countries to target and research the unique aspects of each market.
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Consider your payment options

Make sure consumers have confidence in using their preferred method for payments.
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Research local laws, duties, and taxes

Understand local laws, duties, taxes, customs, and free trade agreements.
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Establish support and shipping services

Make sure that your policies on international shipping, delivery, returns, and payment are clear and easy to find.
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Determine demand and selling strategies

Generate demand by building brand awareness and taking advantage of local trends and holidays.

The global sales opportunity

Globalisation and internet adoption are creating opportunities for small businesses to reach new customers abroad.


of adults with internet access shopped online in past 12 months.*

$6.7 billion

Total cross-border spend for 2016.*


of cross-border shoppers cited “better price” as their top reason for shopping overeas.*

Insights about international buyers

A PayPal and Ipos research provides insight to the popular shopping destinations, what and why do customers buy overseas, and how they pay.*

Where they buy

Where they buy

The most popular destinations for cross-border shoppers to buy from online

  • China 21%
  • USA 17%
  • UK 13%
  • Germany 7%
  • Japan 4%
What they buy

What they buy

The top cross-border online shopping categories are:

  • Clothing, shoes and accessories 46%
  • Consumer electronics 29%
  • Travel and transportation 25%
  • Digital entertainment/education 23%
  • Toys and hobbies 23%
  • Cosmetics/beauty products 20%
Why they buy

Why they buy

The top reasons that consumers are buying cross-border online

  • Better prices (76%)
  • Access to items not available in my country (65%)
  • I can discover new and interesting products (59%)
  • Websites in this country have more variety/availability of different products and styles (52%)
  • Shipping is more affordable (50%)
What stops them from buying

What stops them from buying

The top barriers to cross-border shopping among those consumers who shop cross-border include

  • Delivery shipping costs (43%)
  • Concern that they may not receive the item (35%)
  • Return shipping costs (34%)
  • Find out about PayPal’s Returns Shipping On Us here
  • Having to pay customs duties/fees and/or taxes (33%)
How PayPal can help

How PayPal can help

PayPal is widely and frequently used for cross-border online shopping.

Nearly 70% of online cross-border shoppers preferred to use PayPal for their overseas purchases.

A truly global payments platform available in more than 200 markets, allowing customers to get paid in more than 100 currencies.

How the World Buys Online

Global research provides merchants key insights to expand global sales including: invest in SEO, think mobile and sell into new markets.