• 28% of consumers shopped less online in 2022 than in 2021 • Almost half of respondents stated that they think that free deliveries will become more important in the future when shopping online • Sustainability continues to be a point of interest for online shoppers • More than half (53%) of respondents continued to buy from Amazon, AliExpress and eBay

Brussels, 26 January 2023 – The 2022 edition of the IPC Cross-Border E-Commerce Shopper Survey has been released today, providing a comprehensive overview of online cross-border consumers’ expectations and habits. Conducted with 33,009 participants from 39 countries worldwide, the survey accounts for 93% of the world’s e-commerce market. This year, the survey studied the impact the current economic crisis has had on online shopping as well as how consumers would prefer to shop online sustainably. 

IPC’s CEO, Holger Winklbauer said: “The IPC Cross-Border E-Commerce Shopper Survey is an invaluable source of information for the postal industry and continues to develop  each year, reflecting the dynamics of the markets. By collecting such useful data, posts are able to position themselves to provide the best possible delivery experiences for consumers by understanding their needs and expectations.”

The increased cost-of-living  asks for more solutions for consumers

As the world is challenged by the increased cost of living, it is vital to understand and analyse the current and future impact this may have on online shopping. The IPC Cross-Border E-Commerce Shopper Survey therefore asked consumers how changes in the cost-of-living will affect their shopping behaviours. Sixty-five percent of consumers will stop spending as much and will cut back shopping online. 

However, many consumers noted that they will either continue to shop online, but plan to spend less. Others will look towards free deliveries or Click and Collect services to lower shopping costs.  In the tune of adjusting shopping behaviours, 24% of respondents said that they will buy more from domestic-based e-shops in the future. This is combined with a significant portion stating that they will buy less from the UK, China and the US. 

Amazon continues to trump the e-retailer giants

When shopping online, it is no surprise that consumers value recognisability and continue to shop at retail giants such as Amazon, eBay and AliExpress.  The survey revealed that 27% of consumers bought their most recent purchase from Amazon and 17% from Alibaba. However, between 2019 and 2022, both Wish and eBay lost significant cross-border market share, while Amazon increased in several countries. Chinese fashion e-retailer Shein has also increased significantly from 0% in 2019 to 6% in 2022. 

Consumers are willing to sacrifice fast deliveries to reduce the environmental impact of cross-border shopping

Sustainability continues to be point of interest when shopping online for consumers. Thirty percent of participants of the survey strongly agreed that they would prefer to wait a few days to receive their package in order to reduce their environmental impact. However, a majority of consumers think that it is the responsibility of the e-retailer rather than the consumer to pay for sustainability measures when it comes to online shopping. Furthermore, 23% strongly agreed that sustainable delivery is too vague and so they would rather not pay for it. It was concluded that despite the demand and call for sustainable delivery and shopping options, only 14% ever paid when offered to do so. The countries where paid-for sustainable delivery options were most popular were Switzerland, China, Finland, Austria and Germany. 

More people pay custom fees on cross-border items

With stricter rules on importing items in many countries, the number of consumers having to pay custom duties has also increased. Due to several factors including Brexit and the rules for customs changing in the EU and in several other countries, the number of people who paid customs duties has increased from 11% in 2016 to 16% in 2021.

Seventy-nine percent of respondents were made aware pre-purchase that customs would be applicable for their cross-border purchase. As in previous years, this proportion was lower in Europe than in other regions, with 41% of consumers being alerted in Iceland, 42% in Slovakia and 55% in Croatia.

To download the key findings from the research, go to http://www.ipc.be/shopper


Notes to editor:
Scope of the research: The IPC Cross-Border Shopper Survey 2022 took place in 39 countries: Argentina, Austria, Australia, Belgium, Brazil, Canada, Chile, China, Croatia, Cyprus, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, India, Ireland, Italy, Japan, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Mexico, Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Slovakia, Slovenia, South Korea, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, the United Kingdom and the United States.
Target group: Frequent cross-border online shoppers, who have bought physical goods online at least once in the last three months and have made a cross-border online purchase in the past year. The target group was determined by quotas based on the age and gender profile of the online population per country.
Methodology: Quantitative research using online access panels supplied by Dynata. Fieldwork took place in October 2022.
Sample size: 33,009 completed responses for all the markets. The sample size was between 100 and 1,000 respondents per country.

About International Post Corporation
International Post Corporation (IPC) is the leading service provider of the global postal industry that provides leadership by driving service quality, interoperability and business-critical intelligence to support posts in defending existing business and expanding into new growth areas. It is a cooperative association of 25 member postal operators in Asia Pacific, Europe and North America. 
IPC’s solutions and services are used by over 190 posts worldwide. Since 1989 IPC has set standards for upgrading quality and service performance and developed technological solutions that help members enhance service for international letters, packets and parcels. IPC engages in industry research, creates business-critical intelligence, provides a range of platforms and programmes for member post CEOs and senior management to exchange best practices and discuss strategy. IPC also manages the system for incentive-based payments between postal operators. 

For further information, please contact:
Eva Wouters
Communications manager, PR and media relations
International Post Corporation
+32 2 724 71 91