In what could be good news for retailers in Australia, a new report has predicted that spending from international consumers will increase for our domestic online businesses.

The report, titled Modern Spice Routes: The Cultural Impact of Cross-Border Shopping, was produced by PayPal and Nielsen, and examined online retailing trends in the US, China, Germany, Australia, Brazil and the UK over 12 months.

Findings from the report found that Australia is one of the six key overseas destinations where international consumers make cross-border purchases.

According to PayPal, international exporting and importing of goods (or cross-border shopping) makes up around a quarter of all of their total payment volume, indicating the level of purchases made from global retailers.

Australia took up 16 per cent of cross-border shopping transactions, but this figure is predicted to increase over the next five years.

The retail research found that the number of shoppers making online cross-border purchases will increase, and therefore push up the value of how much is being spent.

On a global scale, this figure will grow by almost 200 per cent, rising from US$105 billion to US$307 billion by 2018.

The most popular categories for online cross-border spending were clothes, shoes and accessories ($12.5 billion); health and beauty ($7.6 billion); and personal electronics ($6 billion).

“The emergence of these ‘modern spice routes’ is great news for businesses the world over. Our message to merchants is if you are looking for new ways to grow your sales, especially in an economic downturn, start selling directly to 94 million cross-border shoppers in these six markets and own a piece of this US$105 billion market,” said PayPal president David Marcus.

This information may present a good opportunity for retailers in Australia to think about expanding their shopping to international markets and reap the benefits of this growing trend.