Even though we constantly lay claim to their successful actors, Australia and New Zealand have a special relationship, and we’ve got a lot in common with our neighbours across the Ditch – including a love of online shopping.
With no language barrier and straightforward international shipping logistics, Australian retailers have a fantastic opportunity for extending their online market and selling to New Zealand.
New Zealand’s retail industry has been growing faster than Australia’s since 2013, and according to the 2018 New Zealand eCommerce Review, their retail sector is now worth AUD$87.4 billion annually.
New Zealanders love the convenience of shopping online, and it gives them access to a wider range of brands and products at competitive prices. A report from StarTrack on selling products in New Zealand found that nearly half of all online purchases made in New Zealand are from overseas, and if you think about it Australia really is in the perfect position to sell to Kiwi consumers.
If you’re keen to take your business across the Tasman, there are a few things you should keep in mind.
Shipping and logistics
When you break out into a new international market, you’ll need to find the best carrier to allow you to offer competitive and quality shipping. Crossing the ditch means you’ll need to consider a different set of logistics, and it can be time-consuming to figure this out if you don’t get the right shipping partner.
With Shippit, you can manage your New Zealand-bound freight with the same ease as domestic shipping, with one account providing access to multiple carriers, so you always get the best of every service. Say goodbye to complex shipping rules, and ‘koa’ to easy trans-tasman deliveries, with Shippit’s ability to recommend the best way to pack your order and find the best carrier for the job.
Multi-carrier, multi-warehouse, multi-store, multi-location, multi-user – no matter how complex your shipping operations are, Shippit was built to make it simple. With an easy-use cloud-based shipping platform, you’ll be ready to ship joy to your Kiwi customers in minutes not days, guaranteed.
New Zealanders shop in pretty much the same way as Aussies do – the PC still leads the way, but people are increasingly using tablets and mobile phones to do their buying, so it’s important your eCommerce website is mobile friendly.
Kiwis have moved away from walking instore to make a purchase, and are relying on their digital devices to find what they want. A Nielsen survey showed that over 2 million New Zealanders now shop online, and additional research has shown that 3 out of 5 New Zealanders use their phones or tablets to jump online while in-store to compare prices and product details. Having your website up to scratch will make this easier for them and help drive them through the sales process.
New Zealand consumers are savvy and are keen to research different options before making a purchase. They use peer-based discussion forums and product review and comparison websites to help them make their decisions. So you’ll need to have detailed, well-written product descriptions for every item you sell, with easily accessible customer reviews to give your buyers the social proof they crave.
Don’t get caught up in thinking that you can skimp on your returns policy because the item has further to travel. Just like Australia, New Zealand has strong consumer protection laws that apply to online purchases, and New Zealand shoppers want to be confident you’ll do the right thing if they need to return or exchange their goods. Be generous with your returns policy, make your terms simple and straightforward, and be sure your returns information is easy to find on your website.
Some of the most popular eCommerce destinations in New Zealand are online marketplaces like Trade Me, Amazon and eBay. It can be tricky to establish a new international audience for a product, but by listing on sites like these you can easily tap into an existing customer base. Trade Me has around 4.4 million active users and 7 million listings, making it a great place to begin raising your brand awareness.
If you’re an Australian retailer selling to New Zealand just makes sense – and Shippit can help you keep it simple and straightforward.