What Can Flow Do For You? Cross-Border E-commerce Success Stories in Popular Product Categories

September 2, 2020

E-commerce merchants with global ambitions have found success by leveraging Flow's flexible, end-to-end technology. Our e-commerce platform helps online merchants across all retail categories to seamlessly enter new international markets. In this blog, we will look at a few retail categories that offer significant cross-border e-commerce potential. We'll also look at how brands in each of these categories solved common challenges by using Flow's technology. To learn more about the impact Flow's solution can have on e-commerce businesses, view our Success Stories & Client Results stat pack here.

Category 1: Home Decor

As we mentioned in a previous blog, changes were brought about by the global pandemic driving increased demand in specific categories, including home decor. Home Depot, Lowe's, Target, and other home decor retailers in the U.S. saw major upticks in online sales in the first half of 2020. Home decor brands experienced increases in international traffic to their websites between January and March 2020, compared to the same period the previous year.

One of Flow's customers is a world-renowned home decor brand that offers innovative accessories, gifts, home furnishings, and classic modern design products. The brand realized that cross-border presented an untapped opportunity for them to expand revenue and grow. Within eight months of onboarding with Flow's modular e-commerce platform, this brand was up and running with localized e-commerce websites in 69 countries, driving in an additional $1 million in sales revenue. This brand now has the power to conduct A/B testing in each market where it does business to improve its conversion rates. You can view more information on their impressive results here.

Category 2: Fast Fashion

This subset of apparel retail has historically relied on the in-store shopping experience, but the pandemic has forced fast fashion brands to evolve. Savvy fast fashion retailers that made strategic investments in e-commerce before the global health crisis have seen demand skyrocket. For example, Inditex, the parent company of multiple fast fashion brands including Zara, reported that online sales increased 50% in Q2 2020 compared to 2019, and online sales grew 95% in April when comparing performance year over year.

One of the world's most sought-after fast fashion brands, loved by celebrities, influencers, and consumers, turned to Flow for help with its global online shopping experience. Using Flow’s platform, this brand saw an increase of 35% in website conversions and a 74% reduction in refunds from international customers. Additionally, this brand was able to recover 10% of items in abandoned carts after implementing Flow by removing the friction at checkout for global shoppers.

Category 3: Fashion Eyewear

The online eyewear retail sector is booming globally, especially as consumers are reluctant to try on products in stores for safety reasons. The global eyewear e-commerce market is expected to be worth $179 billion by the end of 2026. Asia-Pacific consumers dominate this retail category in terms of demand, but North America and Europe also present strong opportunities.

A distinct eyewear brand specializing in classic frames with a hip, modern look chose Flow's cross-border e-commerce platform to help them expand globally. This eyewear brand has seen a remarkable 117% year-over-year growth rate, with 44% of total revenue now coming from cross-border sales. Furthermore, the brand is connecting with consumers via localized online experiences in 69 countries.

Category 4: Premium Jeans/Denim

As stay-at-home orders were issued to stop the spread of COVID, consumers worldwide eschewed their jeans in favor of casual apparel such as sweat pants and athleisure. But today, jeans and denim apparel are making a comeback, and well-known brands such as Levi's are finding new ways to connect with global consumers online. While many brands did suffer overall losses in the first half of the year, there were silver linings. For example, Levi's saw a 25% increase in e-commerce sales in the second quarter of this year, which helped offset some of the losses from decreased retail sales.

A modern California lifestyle clothing brand known for its premium denim jeans knew that international business was an opportunity, but struggled with how to leverage global consumers' interest until meeting with Flow. Now selling to consumers in 74 countries, this denim brand has seen a 37% increase in international sales growth.

Category 5: Sustainable clothing

We've talked before about the rise of purpose-driven brands and environmentally conscious clothing. This trend was already growing among global consumers before the pandemic and has become even more relevant today. Ninety percent of Gen Z consumers feel strongly that companies should be responsible for responding to and addressing environmental and social issues.

One popular sustainable clothing brand partnered with Flow to help improve its international selling strategy. Flow's platform enabled the brand to conduct A/B testing in global markets to determine its free shipping purchase threshold. Consumers in each global market had different expectations of how much they would spend to qualify for free shipping. Once the brand had data on consumer preferences to make the best decisions for their cross-border strategy, the company achieved a 100% increase in international sales and a 60% reduction in year-over-year shipping costs.

Some Flow clients have seen a 300% year-over-year increase in international traffic to their localized websites. Further, we have customers that have indicated an average of 72% increase in conversions in key global markets.

To find out more about what the Flow cross-border e-commerce solution can do for your brand, get in touch today.