Amazon reels in more international shoppers
Amazon just earned a whole new slew of shoppers in foreign countries thanks to a new partnership with Western Union.
Western Union will launch a new payment option that allows international shoppers to pay in person, in local currency where available, for their Amazon purchases. Amazon says it is focused on providing international customers with access to millions of products.
“There are people in the world who want greater access to Amazon’s huge product selection but paying for those purchases has been a real obstacle for many customers,” said Hikmet Ersek, president and CEO of Western Union. “We’re leveraging our money movement platform to make it easier to shop global and pay local. By facilitating the complex foreign exchange and settlement process, we’re opening up more consumer choices and access to online shopping for tens of millions of potential new Amazon customers.”
Western Union’s money movement platform will power a new payment option for cross-border customers shopping on Amazon.com. Customers in select countries will be able to shop on Amazon and pay in person, in local currency, through the Western Union® agent network.
Forrester Research estimates that cross-border shopping will make up 20% of e-commerce by 2022, with sales reaching $630 billion.1 Choice, quality and cost are the main motivations for consumers to shop online from overseas, but there are challenges and concerns about the lack of payment options for consumers who prefer to pay in person or consumers who are not comfortable using online payment methods.
Customers in select countries will be offered the new payment option on the Amazon checkout page. Shoppers will be sent a code and instructions on how to make the payment at a participating Western Union agent location. Western Union’s platform will also power the process for cash refunds for product returns.
Western Union’s cross-border, cross-currency money movement platform – including a robust digital footprint, settlement, treasury and compliance infrastructure, a vast global retail network of over half a million locations, and the ability to send money to billions of accounts and mobile wallets – sets the standard for international money movement. With operations in more than 200 countries and territories, Western Union’s platform processed an average of 32 transactions every second and moved $300 billion in principal across 130 currencies in 2017.
Connecting the digital and physical worlds of money, Western Union’s technology stack, APIs, foreign exchange and settlement engine, agent network, anti-money laundering and fraud detection capabilities make it one of the largest digital and physical money movers for consumers around the globe. The company offers digital transactions in more than 50 countries and territories. Approximately 70% of Western Union’s digital transactions globally now originate on mobile devices.