Cross-Border Electronics Sales: Opportunity and Challenge

by Joe Longo, on October 13, 2017

Electronic devices can be sold around the world, as long as manufacturers prepare.
Electronic devices can be sold around the world, as long as manufacturers prepare.

Selling electronics is a worldwide enterprise today. Personal devices and business products alike have global appeal, and manufacturers hoping to tap this demand are likely considering ways to make cross-border sales, whether via e-commerce or deals with retailers. However, there are challenges: The regulations about electronics labeling will vary by territory, and in the case of a recall, brands will need excellent visibility along their complex international supply chains.

A Great Opportunity

International online sales of electronic devices are strong and only set to increase. According to a survey from 350 Market Insights, cross-border sales of products is one of the main trends becoming evident today. The researchers explained that there are opportunities between countries that share common languages, with French shoppers often buying from Canada and the German-speaking companies in Europe often trading with one another. The report noted that companies are learning to collaborate and make these international sales count.

Per eMarketer, 29 percent of people who make cross-border purchases online have bought consumer electronic devices. That makes it the second-most-popular category of items, following only apparel. This is part of the general rise in e-commerce. Recent years have seen online shopping fulfilling its potential to connect people and brands around the world. In total, e-commerce will be worth $2.4 trillion in 2017, representing 10 percent of overall retail sales, according to eMarketer.

Labeling Gets It Done

Entering the global e-commerce market and selling across borders won't work unless electronics manufacturers are careful in managing the details. This means making sure their products have the right labeling to comply with local regulations wherever they'll go. Furthermore, shipments should be traceable no matter where they go. Enterprise labeling solutions can help with both of these priorities.

Having a strong labeling solution is especially important today because regulations and requirements can change quickly. Not only do brands have to monitor a wide array of demands, they have to adapt when those demands evolve.

For more on Electronics Labeling check out our Q&A report on that topic.