If you have decided to conquer foreign markets and you want to know what to focus on, get to know the opportunities for expansion with ShopAlike. Together with its specialist Miroslava Birešová, we have created a guide with the conditions that you must meet, and tips on how to master this setting with Mergado.
The first step is to research the target market
Rapid interest in online shopping in Europe has led to a year-on-year increase in cross-border sales. It currently accounts for more than 23 % of total sales and gives store owners a clear signal that expanding a business to other European markets is worthwhile.
Effective expansion requires time investment and quality preparation. This opinion is confirmed by Miroslava Birešová, Partner Manager from ShopAlike, who adds:
"The owner of the store should deal with coming to the foreign market at least 2 to 3 months before the main season of the year. It usually starts in the fall, and the summer season is ideal for moving the business to the target market. It is also a key step to adapt the brand to the specific requirements of each country."
Think about the specific conditions of each market
Cash on delivery is a common way of delivering goods in the Czech Republic and Slovakia, but in Germany, it is used only to a very small extent. As many as 57% of German customers prefer payment via PayPal and appreciate a wider range of payment methods.
As a target of the expansion, the Eastern European region is often mentioned. But this is not the only direction you have to take. The Nordic countries, which, unlike Germany and Austria, do not require knowledge of the domestic language, also have a high potential for expansion. Countries such as Sweden, Norway, Denmark, and Finland use English not only in everyday communication but also in online shopping, which accounts for almost 70% of their total sales.
Plan your expansion with ShopAlike
The use of ShopAlike, which is represented in 13 European countries, offers to Czech and Slovak stores an easy way to break through abroad. Expansion may not be an opportunity only for large brands. Easy access to international platforms is also used by smaller stores, which increases their visibility after successful listing and optimization of advertising.
What is the procedure for listing an online store to ShopAlike?
- Contact ShopAlike with a request to expand to a foreign platform and add information about the current or upcoming brand.
- Fill in the sales expansion contract.
- The ShopAlike team then creates a store directly in the system and checks the feed of your store.
- After setting it up, you will get an assistant with whom you will solve the entire advertising management. A qualified professional will advise you on how to edit your feed, analyze information about a specific market, help set your CPC, and optimize your campaigns.
The whole process takes several days to a week – depending on the state of the feed, through which ShopAlike takes products.
Enter the foreign market with a flawless feed
Insufficient information in the feed and low knowledge of sellers about the importance of parameters is a frequent obstacle in listing the store. Therefore, the system cannot classify the products of the online store deeper and becomes less visible.
“Feeds with basic parameters such as price, name, and product identification number are not enough for inclusion. For better involvement, the client should provide broader information, such as color, size, material, time, or price of delivery. Another problem is the incorrect or overlooked fulfillment of an already created parameter,“ adds Miroslava Birešová.
An example of strict criteria within a feed is Germany. Are you heading to this market? Set the feed to the required quality using the rules in Mergado. You may fill in empty parameters using the Overwrite or Bulk overwrite according to queries. A quality feed can significantly improve conversion results. You will get your products deeper into subcategories that will bring you better traffic and higher sales numbers.
By creating a flawless feed for ShopAlike, you get a significant advantage – If it is 100% ready for one platform, you can copy it to other versions. Using the ideal feed, the system will also include products on platforms in other countries, and the store owner does not have to examine their required criteria.
Make yourself visible to future customers
One of the recommended and free services on ShopAlike is Sales Tracking. It provides store owners with a partner interface in which they can set up many functions without the help of a developer.
Sales Tracking and partner interface allows you to:
- correct CPC – if the feed user uses bidding, he can set the cost per click himself and thus control costs or fine-tune the seasonal prices of products
- set a budget
- change data on payment and transport methods
- optimize the store using a tracking code – in the interface the client monitors processes and changes for the selected period (e. g. purchase time, average or most purchased product or average price level of the cart)
- work with recommendations that the ShopAlike system evaluates based on the results from the tracking code
Each online store has the opportunity to obtain a unique tracking code, which the client implements via Google Tag Manager, or put it on the page with the help of an IT expert. When expanding with a new domain, ShopAlike assigns another unique code to the merchant and thus ensures useful results from foreign sales.
Expansion is a big challenge for an online store and brings the potential to improve your business. Wondering which region is the best for your business? Explore opportunities abroad with Mergado and find a suitable market for your growing business..