The very best in international retail are digital natives who are using innovative technology and speedy fulfilment to win new customers globally.

The latest release of the Loqate International Retail Index, in partnership with Retail Week and World Retail Congress, with exclusive research from Edge by Ascential, showcases the best retailers in the world, and uncovers the strategies and technology implemented by these trailblazers in global commerce.

The key theme of this year’s International Retail Index is that all the retailers featured truly understand what their customers want on a local level, and all demonstrate a strong desire to ensure the global experience is quick, easy and convenient.

“Their agile nature and clear focus on innovation… has allowed the likes of Asos, Boohoo and Zalando to reach audiences far and wide”

Among the powerhouse retailers featured in this year’s index – Amazon, Apple and Walmart – are several exciting online pureplays whose agile nature and clear focus on innovation sets them apart, and has allowed the likes of Asos, Boohoo and Zalando to reach audiences far and wide.

Many of these successful international retailers tick the box when it comes to innovative checkout technology such as international address entry capabilities. Also on offer from these customer-obsessed retailers are strategies around clear and easy returns, and multiple payment and currency options that appeal to localised markets.

Beyond innovative retail checkout technology, the next important factor for international success is speedy fulfilment. According to IMRG, of the total volume of online orders delivered to UK consumers in June 2019, almost 62.5% were sent through specified-day or next-day delivery services.

Meanwhile, on the other side of the pond, nearly 40% of US consumers want online orders to arrive in two days, according to a survey by the National Retail Federation.

“There are rising expectations of the wider retail industry to offer a speedy, and often free, delivery service”

Consumers clearly want to fit their shopping activity into their increasingly busy lives. There are rising expectations of the wider retail industry to offer a speedy, and often free, delivery service. The likes of Amazon worldwide, Argos in the UK and Alibaba in China are raising the bar when it comes to providing customer excellence in delivery with the roll-out of rapid, same-day delivery and multiple pick-up options.

Out of the 30 retailers in the Loqate International Retail Index, three-quarters offer express delivery in their home ecommerce market, but only five provide that type of speed of service globally.

When expanding internationally, it’s important to remember that although you are in the business of global commerce, your customers are not. The use of innovative technology, which creates a friction-free journey, and speedy delivery, which gives your customers what they want, are both about creating a seamless and localised experience wherever your customers are located.

International Retail Index 2019


Matthew Furneaux is global commercial director for Loqate, a GBG Solution

Learn how to formulate your international strategy and what technologies are key to expanding globally by joining our expert webinar on Wednesday, 30 October. Loqate will be joined by Robert Gregory, research director EMEA advisory for Edge by Ascential, and Ian McGarrigle, chairman of World Retail Congress.