Internationalisation has been a key trend across the performance marketing channel over the past year. A number of brands have successfully moved into new territories with the demand for UK retailers gaining significant traction overseas.
This has been apparent across the performance channel, with retailers seeing orders placed all over the globe. This trend has been two fold – UK based publishers have been launching into new territories with local language sites to target additional markets, while there has been a significant rise in oversees publishers signing up to international networks to promote retailers within their local market. With hundreds of publishers signing up to the network each month, there is an increasing number of new overseas partners.
In a report recently published by OC&C Strategy Consultants, some of the key retailers benefitting from internationalisation were highlighted. There were a number of sectors benefitting from this trend and fashion was a sector that over-indexed significantly, with increasing clamour for UK based retailers within overseas markets. Working with a number of fashion brands has allowed us to delve into our own data to see the trend of internationalisation amongst these retailers – with a particular focus on the markets they have been successful at entering and the publishers driving this growth.
Advertiser A is a fashion brand with a particular interest in the Scandinavian market. It is interesting to note sales from Norway alone almost outstrip transactions made domestically. The performance channel is certainly aiding their quest into entering this market. Looking into the publishers driving these sales, there is a healthy mix of UK based publishers receiving traffic from Scandinavia coupled with publishers generating sales within their local market.
Advertiser B is a large catalogue brand which has seen strong sales volume throughout Europe – particularly in France, Germany and Spain. Through the performance channel they have also seen a number of sales from further afield with orders being made in the US and Australia. Again, through a mixture of international publishers and domestic publishers receiving overseas traffic.
Advertiser C is a high street fashion brand. Outside of the UK they have received a number of orders across Europe. Where they have been really successful though is further afield, with the vast majority of international orders originating from Canada, Hong Kong and Australia. These sales have typically been driven by domestic publishers who have attracted traffic from these regions.
The transition for UK based publishers to enter overseas markets has been smoother when entering English speaking territories. They can effectively launch within international markets sidestepping the issues that may arise around the language barrier. Publishers within the local market give retailers access to the region and benefit from local market knowledge.
In the past year alone, in excess of 3,500 sign ups to the network have originated from outside of the UK. As demand increases for British goods across the globe, performance marketing provides a strong entrance point for retailers to break into additional markets.
While there are some obvious opportunities for overseas expansion, there are also challenges. It is important to understand the promotional methods used to generate traffic to these retailers and compliance plays a key role. For example there are strict rules in place in the UK surrounding the use of voucher codes and downloadable software. Some methods of driving traffic that are perfectly acceptable in some territories would not be tolerated for UK advertisers.
It is important for compliance to be involved from the initial approval of the publisher’s application as well as monitoring ongoing activity to ensure terms and conditions are being upheld.
By monitoring the location of publishers, it has been possible to align them with advertisers looking to enter certain markets. Internationalisation represents a significant opportunity for retailers to expand into additional territories and this is certainly made possible through the affiliate channel.