European Compendium dedicated to the Cross-Border E-Commerce model in the “NEXT new normal” across Europe

Cross-Border Commerce Europe launches the second edition of a European Compendium dedicated to the Cross-Border E-Commerce model in the “NEXT new normal” across Europe. A collection of seven annual blue paper reports compiled by 70 leading EU C-Level retail executives.

Brussels – November 24th, 2022. Cross-Border Commerce Europe, the platform that drives cross-border e-commerce in Europe, launches a compendium that maps how Cross-Border e-Commerce will be defined in the NEXT new normal across Europe over the year to come. A collection of seven annual Blue Paper reports on strategic topics like Customer Centricity, Green Supply Chain, Marketplaces and Sustainability but also channel related fields such as Brands Direct-to-Consumer, Omnichannel and Scale-Ups. A Compendium carried out by 70 C-Level Retail executives under the auspices of CBCommerce with support from APG, Content Square, FedEx Express, Hurricane and Nuvei.

Brexit, the COVID-19 pandemic and the Russian-Ukrainian war have major implications for the retail sector. Rapid adaptation by the latter is needed to integrate change and return to the ‘new normal’.

CBCommerceNEXT Compendium is the result of six round table brainstorming sessions gathering ten International C-Level Retail executives in each High Level Group.  Representing all sectors and EU countries, they are guided by a chairman having an academic and consulting experience background. All executives are highly reputed experts. Those seven High Level Groups gathered during the whole year 2022 to define the ‘NEXT new normal’ across Europe regarding:

  • Brands Direct-to-Consumer
  • Customer Centricity
  • Green Supply Chain
  • Marketplaces
  • Omnichannel
  • Scale-Ups
  • Sustainability

A 20-page Blue Paper compiled by each High Level Group summarises the learnings and recommendations bringing insights and best practices cases to stimulate radical innovation and tangible action in the European e-commerce industry. The views expressed by each retail executive are their own take-aways and do not necessarily reflect the official positions of their companies.

You will find hereunder some initial learnings wrapped up by each Chairman:

Direct-to-Consumer activity will become the most important channel for many European brands such as Adidas and Lego by 2025.
“The key to reducing channel conflict is channelisation: recognising that customers are different on each channel. This means providing an experience that connects with a community of shoppers so that one channel no longer competes with another. This includes differentiating between product selection, pricing, communication, logistics and payments,” says chairman Oliver Lucas.

Becoming a customer-centric company is an ongoing effort to align culture, organisation, processes and technology.
“A questionnaire with 29 questions around the four dimensions was developed to stimulate discussion and reflection within the retail industry. This approach creates a snapshot of an organisation’s status in terms of customer centricity,” said chairman Siegfried Schallenmueller.

The last mile of the supply chain can account for up to 75% of total supply chain costs. A ‘Green Supply Chain’ strategy is needed
“In other words, this part of the supply chain creates inefficiencies. These inefficiencies are usually also indications of environmental inefficiencies: poor vehicle fill rates, high fuel consumption, empty mileage, etc. These will play a key role in greening the last mile of the e-commerce sector,” confirmed chairmen Sven Verstrepen and Roel Gevaers.

Brands and retailers have to develop their own Marketplaces and therefore EU regulations should be adapted to the marketplace size and business model
“Launching your own cross-border marketplace will create additional revenue streams and increase overall platform conversion. It will increase in assortment without investing or blocking major working capital in stock. This means diversifying and trialling new categories. A mapping of the key parameters of European cross-border marketplaces for onboarding sellers can also be found in this Blue Paper report”, declared Chairman Prof. Dr. Christian Stummeyer.

Channel integration remains a major challenge for traditional retailers. In this post-pandemic landscape, it is crucial to becoming omnichannel, a single connected channel.
“A necessary step is to eliminate business silos and adopt an agile mindset to arrive at a more complete omnichannel structure with integrated technologies. This blue paper addresses channel integration as well as operational issues related to information systems and customer relationship management. Through three case studies, we understand the importance of aligning the customer’s point of view with the retailer’s digital maturity,” confirms chairwoman Claire Gruslin.

All Scale-Ups that are highly successful in their home market plan to continue their growth by entering new markets within the European Union.
“Understanding the different markets and knowing the challenges beforehand helps create a better basis for decisions to enter the market successfully at the first attempt. Preparing for internationalisation makes localisation easier. When thinking about the right shop landscape for future growth in different markets, it helps to choose a shop system that can be easily adapted,” concludes chairman Ulrich Seldeslachts.

Sustainability. Soon, companies will have to comply with the next regulatory European framework which includes 14 indicators to assess their environmental impact and products
“As the EU is putting strict legislation in place to become the first climate-neutral continent by 2050, companies will be required to step up or to be penalised. Retailers need to discover a multi-criteria measure of the environmental performance of a good or service throughout its life cycle. A pragmatic approach should be implemented taking into account both climate change and decline in ecosystems and biodiversity”, confirmed Chairwoman Valérie Tiersen.

I would like to thank our 70 International Retail C-Level executives members, Chairmen and Chairwomen as well as our Knowledge Partners APG, Content Square, FedEx Express, Hurricane and Nuvei who put all their energy behind this eagerly awaited CBCommerceNEXT Compendium. It acts as an inspirational document gathering the best strategies and best European practices cases defining the NEXT for the entire sector”, concludes Carine Moitier, the founder of CBCommerce.eu.

infographic compendium 2022

About Cross-Border Commerce Europe

Cross-Border Commerce Europe is the European network and knowledge platform for all eCommerce and omnichannel players present in at least three countries in Europe. CBCommerce.eu connects the different actors to increase visibility, share knowledge and figures, identify trends and specificities of each European country. Members of Cross-Border Commerce Europe are brands and retailers of all sizes. Partners are suppliers of services in all areas of trade.

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