There are many ways to grow a business using e-commerce today. You can expand your product catalog to offer more items. You can start selling through other channels to increase your brand’s web presence. And then there’s what might be the most ambitious option — open the regional floodgates to sell your products across the globe.
There’s a lot to review before going international, from legal ramifications to fulfillment considerations to customer support for international buyers and more. But whether you’re ready to expand to international or that seems like a long way off, it’s worth considering if your e-commerce technology can uphold its duties when that time comes — including whether it’s flexible enough to extend to other currencies and legal regimes when your business is ready to expand to other regions.
When shopping for an e-commerce platform, scalability and flexibility should be top of mind. These two things we thought deeply about when building our headless e-commerce solution: Sitecore OrderCloud®. And we continue to make updates so customers can use OrderCloud to build an e-commerce platform that grows alongside their businesses.
In this vein, we just released two enhanced features that will support scaling your e-commerce business across borders when that time comes.
Globally available data centers
In some parts of the world, strict data sovereignty laws exist, which require storing business data in the same region the business resides in. If you need to keep your data on shore — that’s no problem. OrderCloud has data centers available in many regions — US West, US East, Europe, Australia, and Japan — allowing you to choose where your data resides.
These regions align to the other products within the Sitecore portfolio, so you can rely on consistent data sovereignty for your composable solutions.
Multi-currency support through Locales
Selling in multiple currencies is not only about making sure your customers can see product pricing in their preferred currency. It also involves making sure transactions are in the currency that your business operates in. Below are five ways Locales simplifies the process radically:
- Set multiple prices in different currencies for a single product
Many businesses choose not to rely on auto-converted prices. One reason is that exchange rates are incredibly fluid, so prices change often. This can create headaches when a buyer adds an item to their cart, comes back days later, and then the price changes. Another reason auto-conversion can be neglected is because prices are not as user-friendly, such as $10.86 instead of a round $10.99 or $11.00. Setting the exact currency price is often the preferred method.
- Allow buyers to select the currency they want to see pricing in
It’s simple — let your customers choose the currency they’re familiar with. If, for example, a US user is on a German site, they can still choose to see USD prices if you enable this. You can also default to their local currency if you know where your buyers are.
- Transact orders in the currency that makes sense for your business
Like the example above, the US user can see prices in USD and place their order in USD even while your business only operates in EUR. The customer benefits from shopping in their local currency. Your business benefits by neither disclosing to nor bothering the customer with the currency you do business in.
- Maintain the buyer currency throughout checkout and into order history
Continuing from point 3 above, the buyer will continue to see their order information and post-purchase details in the currency they placed the order in.
- Create promotions that are currency specific
If you created a $10 off promotion and made it available to US buyers as well as German buyers, the redemption value would be very different for each depending on shifting exchange rates (10 USD for Americans, and 10 EUR for Germans). Instead you now can specify which orders are eligible for the promotion based on the currency of the order.
Managing an international business isn’t easy. OrderCloud can help by simplifying cross-border and cross-currency commerce and in many other ways. You can discover more information about these features by following these links — Technical Documentation and Use Case Guide — and learn more about OrderCloud here.
Ashley Wilson is the Senior Manager of Business Analysis at Sitecore. You can follow her on LinkedIn.