Australian online retailer Adore Beauty has quietly closed the doors of its Tmall storefront, opting for a different approach to cross-border trade.

Adore Beauty opened the store on Alibaba’s global marketplace in April 2016 as a way to enter the Chinese market, selling a limited range of organic Australian beauty products that weren’t otherwise available in China.

“After an initial six month trial on Tmall Global, we felt that the marketplace environment wasn’t a good fit strategically for Adore Beauty or for the luxury brands we work with,” Kate Morris CEO of Adore Beauty told Which-50.

Locally, Alibaba’s focus has largely been on encouraging Australian business to sell into China using Alibaba’s Tmall platform. Tmall is a B2C marketplace that provides foreign retailers the opportunity to sell online in China with lower barriers to entry than if they chose to set up shop independently.

Adore Beauty is now taking a different approach to selling internationally, this week deploying the Borderfree Retail solution from Pitney Bowes, which optimises an ecommerce site for different markets around the globe.

“We will continue to experiment with different strategies to connect with Chinese consumers in ways where we can deliver our successful mix of great brands, rich information and personalised service – such as via Borderfree,” Morris said.

The Borderfree Retail solution delivers an end-to-end technology and services platform designed to attract new customers, handle payments and landed costs, and ensure that deliveries reach customers efficiently.

Morris said the solution “translated the core Adore Beauty experience via our own site to customers around the world.”

“Adore Beauty is Australia’s leading online shopping destination for beauty products and cosmetics and this year our growth strategy has been to expand our footprint globally by partnering with Pitney Bowes and its Borderfree Solution. Through this partnership, we are able to offer thousands of products to more than 150 countries and territories thanks to the technology, which offers a seamless localised experience to customers,” said Morris.

Morris said there had been a good response from customers who have used the solution so far, as it allows them to shop in their own currency and receive products quickly.

“I always know it’s good if my customer experience manager isn’t beating down my door with problems. It’s all been very, very smooth,” she said.

A key benefit of the solution is the ability to provide a localised level of service in many countries at the same time, rather than taking a market-by-market approach to international expansion.

“This solution enabled us to pretty much do a global roll out from day one. From a customer experience perspective it’s still all of the same reasons an Australian customer would shop with Adore Beauty but obviously it smooths out some of the bumps.”

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