The British Expat Community
4.7 million British Expats around the world.
Top destinations include Australia, USA, Spain, Canada
Same top destinations for last 20 years, with Australia
Approximately 25% of Expats are retired.
Cotton Traders Expat Survey Findings
76%said the way of life was the best thing about
living overseas followed by climate (45%).
55% said they spend their free time socialising
(strong community ties – likely to recommend good
product or service).
76%intend on staying overseas.
February 2014. Based on 550 respondents
How it Began
We received requests from customers living overseas.
Cotton Traders target audience aligned with retired
Researched the main areas for Expats in Europe
(avoiding customs regulations).
Project Team – Website, IT, Supply Chain, Marketing
July 2012 – opened up delivery to France, Spain, Ireland,
Cyprus, Malta and Portugal.
Promoted to customers – parcel inserts, email and in store.
Orders from day one with no advertising.
UK customers with a second home abroad, some who had
Worked with a media agency who specialise in Expat market.
Performance To Date
SS13 – added 6 new countries (Italy, Greece, Belgium,
Netherlands, Sweden and Denmark.
SS13 +58% vs AW12
AW13 +74% vs AW12
SS14 projection +35% vs SS13 (added Germany in June)
AW14 budgeted sales +68% vs AW13
They order more frequently than a UK customer
They have a larger average order value than a UK customer
Performance To Date
France and Spain are our top performers.
Difficult to reach – may be intentional.
Expat publications are limited and have low circulation.
Advertising is relatively expensive – poor CPA (but generate
More creative in finding ways to reach them
Working with partners.
Going back to basics
Product mix needs to be suitable given warmer climates
Introduced ‘Winter Sun’ section to website for AW months.
Invested in new technology allowing more tailored solution.
Customer feedback requesting changes to payment process.
Listened to feedback and we introduced PayPal in June.
Removed our Delivery = Billing address rule
Logistical issues – high delivery costs and PO Box addresses.
Leveraged our partnership with Next to achieve favourable
Operate on break-even basis for delivery costs.
Costs based on volumetrics – introduced smaller bag
PO Box address issue unsolved as yet
Limited tactical eCRM promotion due to margin erosion.
Agreed with business to have one ‘Overseas Exclusive’ email
Resulted in some of our best sales days.
We undertook full macro analysis of potential markets.
Decided to open up delivery to Australia, Canada,
Switzerland and Croatia on .com website.
Local market opportunities as well as Expats.
Research revealed some local market ‘quirks’ to be
addressed e.g. Canadian Ecommerce.
Internationalise the website.
Customs considerations for non EU countries.
Closer to Home: The Expat Market
Expat customers are nice to have...but harder to
More cautious approach, but a good way to test a
market with low investment and low risk.