Why the 47.8 Billion Euro E-commerce Market is the Saviour of Southern Europe

By Annifer Jackson

For a region that has endured a prolonged state of fiscal crisis, welcome news can be found in the burgeoning e-commerce sector.

With projected sales for 2014 set to amass €47.8 billion for Southern Europe, the online arena represents a vital domain moving forward and one which is growing fast.

If indeed the €47.8 billion is hit, this would represent nearly a 20 percent year-on-year increase, building strongly on the €40.8 billion taken in e-commerce revenues last year.

Southern Europe accounts for more than 11 percent of Europe’s entire online sales according to the latest report released by Ecommerce Europe. Of 125 million active internet users, 48 million buy goods online, around two percent of all products bought in the region.

The region, consisting of Spain, Italy, Turkey, Greece, Portugal, Croatia, Cyprus and Malta, will be looking to increase the amount its web surfers spend online, especially given the fact only 38 percent of people who use the internet turn this into buying goods.

Perhaps somewhat surprisingly given the harsh publicity handed out by mainstream media, Spain and Greece are regional leaders in this market.

With total e-commerce sales of €14.4 billion, Spain came in ahead of Italy (€11.2 billion) and Turkey (€8.9 billion) in 2013 with a growth of 18.9 percent, above the European average of 17.5 percent. Turkey’s growth last year was a massive 35 percent, a staggering statistic given this growth is actually in decline at present.

Greeks are the biggest spenders per head in Southern Europe, keeping pace with the European average. While on average Southern Europeans spent €842 in 2013, Greeks racked up €1,345, just €31 behind the continental standard.

See the infographic below for more facts and figures showing why e-commerce is and will remain a key economic staple for the region. 


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