European e-commerce grew another 20% last year

European e-commerce grew another 20% last year

In 2012 the European online economy grew yet again, this time by 20%, shows a rapport of Ecommerce Europe. The second largest market of Europe, France, has already announced fugures for the first three months of 2013: another rise of 14%.

300 billion landmark is coming close

According to the rapport the e-commerce industry of the European Union + Croatia (which will be the 28th member of the Union from July) had a turnover of a staggering 277 billion euro: it is to be expected that the 300 billion landmark will be surpassed this year. The three biggest markets, the United Kingdom, Germany and France, are worth no less than 69% of the European e-commerce sales.

 

The rapport also shows that next to a rise in sales of 19%, the number of online shops have also grown by that same number (about 550,000 at the end of 2012): this would mean that the average sales of European webshops did not really show a rise.

 

In the meantime, online is worth about 3.5 percent of the total European economy, a number that should rise to 10% by 2020. Especially the mobile revolution should make this happen: m-tail is worth 5% of all e-commerce sales in Europe, but in pioneer countries such as the United Kingdom that is already 12% - and still growing.

 

Growth margin outside of EU and in Southern Europe

In the part of Europe outside of the EU (mainly Russia, Turkey and Norway) e-commerce does not yet soar that high: for that enormous market online sales barely reach thirty billion euro.

 

The biggest growth markets can however be found in that part outside of the European Union, with Turkey (+75%) and the Ukrain (+40%) at the forefront. There was only one country from Western and Central Europe among the biggest growers: Hungary (+35%). Over the next few years these countries, but also Southern European countries as Spain and Greece, will experience a big growth in e-commerce, despite the economic crisis.

 

A lot is expected from Turkey: despite the once again massive sales growth, e-commerce only takes up about four percent of the total economy. Still the country can show off excellent numbers when talking about online presence (one of the most fanatic internet users in Europe) and credit card penetration (way above the European average), and analysts are expecting those factors to come together in a further boom of e-commerce in Turkey.

 

France starts 2013 off well

In the meantime the first numbers for 2013 have been published: French trade union Fevad saw sales of the online economy in the Hexagon rise by another 14% in the period January-March. This was mainly because of 19,000 new webshops, a growing number of e-shopping seniors (+27%) and a larger frequency of online sales (from 1.6 to 1.8 per month).

 

Fevad is however concerned about the dropping average amount of an online sale: that dropped another 4% to 85 euro in the past trimester, the lowest number ever – a few years ago it was at almost 100 euro.

 

A possible explanation is that e-commerce is becoming part of everyday life, which would mean that consumers are also buying smaller products online – and not only big electronic devices or travels. The Fevad points out that despite the drop the average e-shopper spent a record amount of 467 euro online, compared to 427 euro last year.

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