Europeans shopped more frequently across borders last year, but there are huge regional differences. While the Dutch prefer local webshops (with only 15.2 % of online purchases made to foreign webshops), Luxembourgers spent a whopping 86 % of their online budget at foreign webshops.
Increase for international e-commerce
The Dutch cross-border share is particularly low compared to other European countries, but is not unexpected. The large range of strong Dutch webshops, such as Bol.com, Coolblue, Wehkamp and AH, is no stranger to this. On the other hand, Zalando stands out as the country’s favourite cross-border platform.
The figures come from new research in sixteen countries by Cross-Border Commerce Europe, a platform that aims to promote international e-commerce in Europe. Western Europeans again shopped more frequently across borders last year: the online cross-border market in the researched countries accounted for total sales of 179.4 billion euros in 2022 (excluding travel), up 4.8 % compared to 2021. 27.3 % of all online purchases in Western Europe are cross-border purchases, up from 26.8 % a year earlier.
Luxembourg versus the Netherlands
The champions of cross-border shopping is once again Luxembourg (with 86 % of online purchases made at foreign webshops). This is explained by the fact that Luxembourg is small and has few strong local players, while a very large percentage of the population is active online. They shop on platforms such as Zalando, ASOS, Veepee, FNAC and Amazon.
Belgians made 39.5 % of their online purchases abroad last year, accounting for sales of 6.4 billion euros. 42 % of Belgian online shoppers sometimes buy something from a foreign webshop.
German web shops popular
In the United Kingdom, cross-border online purchases have been declining for years due to Brexit. Britons still spend 17 % of their online purchases, or 258 billion euros, in foreign webshops. This is an 8 % drop, caused by the barriers that newly created regulations and higher shipping costs are to cross-border e-commerce.
The country with the strongest webshops is still Germany, thanks to renowned brands such as Bauhaus, Hugo Boss, HelloFresh, Zooplus and Zalando. Sweden also has a strong international online presence, with IKEA, H&M and Na-kd. The Netherlands are third with 66 webshops in the Cross-Border Top 500, thanks in part to Euronics, C&A and Philips (Signify).