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Internationalisation for Subscription merchants

Selling into new markets is always at the front of mind for any new business but the challenges and considerations for how to move into a new territory can be unclear. In this article, we explain the key elements of a new market and why subscription is not as easy as you may think.

Subscription and international sites – what are the current options?

We have all seen the neat drop-downs with the flag or currency of choice. What many merchants don’t realise though is that these clever apps won’t always work on websites. Websites, where the price for the product is broken down for key messaging across (for example for ‘per use’ or ‘per serving’), will prove incompatible to automated XE rate converts.

Introducing: Shopify Markets

With the imminent arrival of Shopify Markets, a cross-border management tool that helps you identify, set up, launch, optimise and manage your international markets – all from a single store, the prospect of internationalisation has never seemed so tangible. Unfortunately, 75% of D2C businesses are also subscription. This means that while Shopify markets sounds promising, it doesn’t get around the problem of needing a separate Recharge account for every currency you want to sell in. As of February 2022, an additional Shopify store is required for each currency (aka Recharge account), plus the accompanying app costs and general website upkeep.

What do you need to consider for international subscription?

There are three key areas that make expanding into a new marketing challenging:

  • Currency: Getting the product to reflect the price; rounding up correctly if set to a default exchange
  • Language: Reflecting the localised language in an authentic way rather than an auto-translate
  • Logistics: Postage rates and delivery times for very different geographies

With increasingly complicated subscription mechanics being implemented to provide unique and personal ecommerce experiences, rolling out the above isn’t easy.

Recharge Q2 Updates

Recharge are the go-to for recurring payments and we have it on good authority that the first element of tackling the challenges for internationalisation is well underway; currency.

If you are a UK merchant, looking to expand to Ireland and want to sell in Euros (but don’t need extensive language or postage changes) then we want to hear from you! We have been asked by Recharge to be a part of their select beta programme to test out new features.

Multi-currency is the first step to enabling subscriptions without additional sites.

If you need support moving into a new territory, we’re on hand to make sure all considerations are factored into your internationalisation strategy. Get in touch.


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