Did Brexit Make British Retailers Competitive?

Brexit has made a large number of perfumes from the UK cheaper by almost 10%, making many of them cheapest globally to any destination.

It seems the MSRP and retail prices are not updated for some time after big currency changes.

Our customers started clicking on UK sites several times as often after Brexit.

Introduction

Imagine a world where something costs $100 in the US and $105 in the UK. Then, overnight, that $105 becomes $95. Suddenly, Americans can get things cheaper from Britain. This just happened.

We started Pricentile to compare prices globally. This obviously includes taking advantage of foreign exchange fluctuations.

As the British voted to exit the European Union (“Brexit”), the British Pound fell by about 10% versus the US Dollar. Does this mean that British websites are now cheaper than the rest of the world? Well, we just so happen to have a log of these prices…

The Products

We selected around 150 perfumes from our site that had at least 3 distinct countries of origin and compared prices before and after Brexit.

We calculated the total price in US dollars to buy and ship the product to an address in four destination countries, and checked what percentage of products were cheapest before and after Brexit:

The UK has improved everywhere as an origin. In the US, the UK has replaced domestic websites as the cheapest origin for most products.

The Discounts

How much cheaper? Here is a plot of the price changes after Brexit:

There are clear peaks between -6% and -9% for Australia, Singapore and the United States, and the price changes are centered around 0% in the United Kingdom as expected, although most products just got a hell of a lot more expensive for Brits!

We will track the pound and if it stays low, write a follow-up article when retailers finally raise their prices.

Example

Nothing illustrates a point better than an example. Let’s assume you are a particular fan of Versace’s “Bright Crystal Absolu” Eau de Parfum. You can of course find current prices right here, but what happened during Brexit?

It was a great day to shop abroad as in all non-UK destinations, the price dropped by a significant amount.

The Customers

We obviously can’t share numbers here. But we noticed a significant uptick in clicks going to UK sites after Brexit, between 3 and 7 times as many.

It happened gradually over the next two days and the ratio has stayed high since then.

Conclusion

A significant number of products became cheaper to order from the UK after Brexit. Next time something happens in the world, check their local shops… not only will you get a bargain, you will help some retailers in need!