Published December 16, 2015
By Jim Tompkins
CEO, Tompkins International
Today I am publishing the third of our 3 top ten lists associated with my newest video, “Facing The Titans”. This is my list of the Top 10 Retailers in Crossborder Commerce. Alibaba is the global leader in Crossborder Commerce, due to Jack Ma’s innovations and being situated in China, the largest consumer and eCommerce market in the world, where consumers have an insatiable appetite for foreign products and international brands.
The opportunity in crossborder commerce grew dramatically, with little notice, when Alibaba initiated Tmall Global in 2014, after the Chinese government established free trade zones the previous year to ease the importation of individually addressed packages, the bedrock model in eCommerce. One well known success story is Costco, who launched on Tmall in 2014 and were shocked when Singles Day revenue hit $3.5 million. The top ten:
- Alibaba – The leader in the largest eCommerce market with the largest consumer demand for crossborder commerce. Their Tmall platform also gives sellers access to consumers in over 200 countries.
- Amazon – Always putting their customers first, Amazon launched a site on Tmall Global to provide their sellers access to the Chinese market through the Tmall platform even as they aggressively grow their Amazon.cn Chinese site.
- Costco – After selling $3.5 million on Singles Day in 2014 Costco almost exceeded that in only one hour this year.
- Zara – Like Amazon, even though they have their own Zara.cn Chinese website they launched a site on Tmall to reach Chinese consumers where they shop online.
- Gap – Even with over 100 stores in China the Gap sells through Tmall Global to reach consumers that want confidence they are not purchasing counterfeit goods.
- Nike – The number one selling international sports brands on Singles Day.
- Apple – An important lesson here: even though Apple phones are made in China, the Chinese consumer, fearing counterfeits, prefers to purchase imported products from reliable sources.
- Nordstrom – Launches their Tmall Global site supported by promotions through Dealmoon.
- Bayern Munich – The football club’s jerseys became the number one best selling item in the sports category shortly after launching on Tmall Global.
- Sneakerhead.com – This is not just an opportunity for big retailers and major CPG brands, smaller firms can grow their revenue through crossborder commerce. It does take a little time and effort to develop your brand to where the Chinese consumer has confidence in it.
There is a global opportunity for crossborder commerce, but we are emphasizing the opportunity in China because it is as the world’s largest eCommerce market and because U.S. goods are the most sought after by Chinese internet shoppers.
Your international growth strategy requires elements of both crossborder commerce and crossborder business and I address the distinctions in my new video. But you need to get started! The good news is that through Tmall Global and the lowering of the importation hurdles for eCommerce by the Chinese government, the path to getting started has already been laid out for you.