Retailers are now able to test international markets by building an online presence in various geographies before choosing how and when to grow their physical presence, but it’s crucial that retailers actively work to put infrastructure in place, according to BigCommerce director of product management, Jordan Sim.

“Ultimately success in retail on a global level hinges on a brand’s ability to understand the needs of its customers within each market and its prioritisation of technology,” he told Retailbiz.

“International expansion gives retailers access to a wider pool of potential customers, which, put simply, means greater business growth. Businesses wishing to remain competitive must look elsewhere to gain back market share.”

An increasing number of businesses are also turning to headless commerce to prioritise agility and create experiences that ensure customer loyalty.

“Headless commerce is essentially the decoupling of the front and back-ends of an ecommerce platform. It allows traditionally pure-play online retailers to move into more of a content-rich, brand-championing environment, engaging with their consumers in a more personalised and authentic manner,” Sim said.

“It means retailers can create a consistent identity across an entire ecosystem of touchpoints, providing a foundation from which to create long-term customer relationships that can deliver sustainable business growth. This is particularly important as brands look to grow their presence overseas.”

When asked about demands from online shoppers on both a local and international level, Sim said it’s all about the experience – personalised and easy brand interactions.

“There’s a desire for immersive shopping experiences and moving forward, the unification of the shopping experience across customer touchpoints will be essential. In the future, technology and shopping will become so intricately connected that there won’t be a distinction between an online experience and in-store — it’ll simply be commerce.

“Overall, the online shopping experience is evolving to focus on storytelling and the creation of engaging experiences. The retailers who can successfully combine entertainment and commerce are likely to be most successful in the long run.”