Rapyd study reveals five key challenges your business faces when growing cross-border.

Rapyd conducted a study to understand how businesses view cross-border commerce in their organizations’ overall priorities. This online quantitative study was conducted by surveying cross-border commerce decision-makers of medium and large businesses across six countries: France, Germany, Italy, Spain, the UK and the US.

The results showed cross-border commerce is a top priority for 93% of the businesses surveyed. Discover more in our Global State of Cross-Border Commerce Report.

Cross-Border Commerce is a Top Priority in 2023

Chart: Importance of Cross-Border Commerce

Why Cross-Border Is Important

This multi-trillion-dollar opportunity reached US$156T in 2022 with an expected CAGR of five percent. Cross-border commerce is important because it provides access to new markets and customers, which can lead to increased revenue and growth. By reducing the dependence on any one market, cross-border commerce can play a critical role in the success and growth of businesses in today’s interconnected global economy.

Cross-border commerce is a multi-trillion-dollar opportunity that reached US$156T in 2022 with an expected CAGR of 5%

Grab This Growing Market

Nearly all businesses surveyed (96%) reported growth in cross-border commerce year-over-year. Of those, nearly half (46%) reported a 10-30% growth in selling across borders. Over half the businesses (57%) we interviewed see more expansion opportunities outside their existing markets. Some businesses cite the need to keep up with competitors as a reason for cross-border expansion. Customer demand is also a top reason for making cross-border commerce a business priority.

 96% of Businesses Reported Cross-Border Gains

Chart: Year-over-year cross-border commerce growth.

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The 5 Challenges Businesses Face When Growing Cross-Border

Organizations that want to gain access to new international customers have numerous challenges to overcome. They must look for ways to manage risk, manage costs and optimize the customer experience. The ability to accept cross-border payments is important too. Allowing customers to pay the way they want to pay is crucial in sales and customer acquisitions. And the ability to pay suppliers, workers and contractors is crucial when expanding operations overseas. 

Challenge 1: Acquiring New Customers

When it comes to cross-border commerce, businesses big and small consider acquiring new customers their top operational challenge. Developing a deep understanding of customers is important in an international setting where existing expertise with customers’ needs may be limited. Businesses need to understand local consumer payment preferences and commerce trends, then localize their offerings to meet customer expectations. In a new era of remote work and greater employee flexibility, organizations should consider hiring local employees who bring in-depth cultural expertise that can help businesses gain a foothold in a new region. 

Challenge 2: Managing Risk

Businesses cite risks as the second biggest cross-border commerce challenge they face. This includes all types of risk including fraud, compliance, currency/FX and data security risks. The top risks that businesses consider important are Data Security (32%) followed by Fraud (31%) related risks. Both of these have huge implications for the business as well as their customers. If not managed well, they can lead to tremendous losses. In the case of managing data security risk where 52% identified it as the most important, only 27% have fully implemented a solution.

Risky Business: Data Security & Fraud Top Concerns

Chart: Top business risks when expanding overseas

Challenge 3: Enabling Local Payments

Almost half of businesses in our study stated that being able to accept cross-border payments using local methods in countries they do business in is key to growing their sales. 

Businesses are no longer limited by physical borders. Understanding customers’ payment preferences and offering local payment methods help to create an optimal checkout experience that can increase cross-border sales. Local payments are regionally preferred payment types that go beyond credit cards. These include digital wallets, bank transfers, cash vouchers, local debit networks, open invoicing and other methods used around the world to pay for goods and services in-store and online. Rapyd’s global payments network lets you offer over 900 payment methods with a single integration to enhance your customer experience, increase conversions and help develop trust and brand loyalty anywhere in the world where you do business.

Case Study, How Rapyd Helped GoTrade Expand to 150 Markets.

Challenge 4: Organizational Readiness

To survive in international markets, it is important that organizations are structured to support cross-border growth. This may mean ensuring you have a local presence, that teams are aligned or that the right talent is in place. Another important element is the ability and willingness to tap into local talent that can provide a wealth of local expertise. Localizing site content for users with language translation, currency presentation and customer support teams, will help build local credibility and trust required with shoppers to convert.

Only a third of the businesses are completely ready (33%) with optimizing their organizational structure and over half (53%) have only made some progress in this area. About a third (33%) have invested in local talent while nearly half (48%) state that they are somewhat ready.

Risky Business: Data Security & Fraud Top Concerns

Chart: Organizational readiness for international expansion

Challenge 5: Cross-Border Payouts

Growing into new markets often requires working with local suppliers, employees and freelancers. High wire transfer and foreign exchange fees can add up and take away from your profits as your business expands. Having a payment partner that understands regional banking regulations is very important. Direct bank transfers and global ACH payments are cost-effective ways to pay employees. In some markets, bank account adoption is low and companies need alternative ways to pay workers. Businesses may need to consider alternatives such as ewallets, cash payment networks or even issuing your own cards and loading funds into worker accounts that you create.

Case Study: How Remote Employee Platform Lano Sends Payouts to 150+ Countries.


Rapyd is the fastest way to power local payments anywhere in the world, access new markets and fuel your cross-border growth. With Rapyd, your business can accept and send local and cross-border payments to just about anyone—faster, cheaper and easier.

Rapyd Can Help You:

  • Accept payments and send payouts from one platform
  • Expand cross-border card acquiring
  • Quickly access new markets 
  • Stop wasting time integrating multiple payment gateways
  • Navigate legal and compliance issues

Learn how Rapyd can help you save millions on transaction and FX fees while spending 70% less time managing payments.

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About the 2022 Global State of Cross-Border Commerce (CBC) Readiness Study

The goal of the study is to better understand how businesses (B2B and C2B) view cross-border commerce in their organizations’ overall priorities. An online quantitative study was conducted in April 2022 surveying cross-border commerce decision-makers among small and medium businesses (employees between 11-499) and large businesses/enterprises (employees over 500) and across a broad set of industries and verticals. The total sample size is 918 with the US (406), UK (101), Germany (105), Italy (103), Spain (100), and France (103).

We surveyed cross-border decision-makers from a variety of industries such as technology, financial services, retail, health & food, and professional services.

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