The Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic fuelled e-commerce growth in Azerbaijan. Lockdown and other restrictions on consumer movement, remote working, few opportunities for social interaction and the closure of non-essential retailers saw consumers look for alternatives to store-based retailers.
In line with global trends, some consumers switched to purchasing groceries via e-commerce during the pandemic. However, while retail current value sales registered dynamic growth, food and drink e-commerce remained underdeveloped and quite niche.
The comparative novelty of e-commerce in Azerbaijan has led to a series of regulatory interventions in the review period, with the government working hard to monitor and exert some control over internet transactions. During the review period new legislation increased import taxes for certain products and impacted the landscape from 2019.
E-commerce is set to continue to see fast retail value (constant 2021 prices) growth over the forecast period, as the infrastructure improves and more consumers gain consistent access to the internet. However, the channel remains somewhat chaotic, and there remain many restraints on the stronger development of e-commerce in Azerbaijan.
A key obstacle to the development and growth of e-commerce remains the heavily entrenched shopping preferences of most Azerbaijani consumers. E-commerce continues to be characterised by sales of non-grocery products, for example, because consumers do not trust the channel for sales of fresh produce, and continue to choose traditional outlets where they can negotiate on price.
Food and drink e-commerce is expected to remain underdeveloped in the forecast period. Despite consumers eagerly seeking and acquiring digital experience, they are quite conservative when it comes to purchasing grocery products, for example.
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Sales of consumer goods to the general public via the Internet. Please note that this includes sales through mobile phones and tablets (i.e. m-commerce). E-commerce includes sales generated through pure e-commerce websites and through sites operated by store-based retailers. Sales data is attributed to the country where the consumer is based, rather than where the retailer is based. The definition of e-commerce is agnostic as to where actual payment takes place; if an order is initiated online, it is considered to be an e-commerce transaction, even if the order is ultimately paid for in-store (or elsewhere). As a result, all ‘click-and-collect’ and ‘collect-at-store’ transactions are counted as e-commerce sales. E-commerce excludes sales of: (a) Consumer-to-consumer (C2C) and business-to-business (B2B) sales, although please note that sales between businesses and consumers (i.e. B2C sales) on sites such as eBay are included; (b) Sales of motor vehicles, motorcycles and vehicle parts; (c) Tickets for events (sports, music concerts, etc.) and travel; (d) Sales of travel and holiday packages; (e) Revenue generated by online gambling sites; (f) Returned products/unpaid invoices; and (h) Internet sales from direct selling companies, as these are tracked in Direct Selling market size/shares. Example e-commerce brands include Amazon.com, Zappos.com, Apple.com, iTunes, Rakuten, Tesco.com, Dell.com, Coles Online, etc. 3rd Party Merchant sales through online marketplaces, such as Amazon.com, eBay.com and Walmart.com, are included and split out in shares. 3rd party merchants are the summation of sales that come from businesses that are present on an online marketplace (e.g. Amazon, Alibaba). Marketplaces are websites that allow multiple merchants to sell on the marketplace website, with the marketplace operator processing the transactions, but many marketplaces provide offer other services as to help with shipping, handling, payment, and product storage. The marketplace is not the merchant of record legally, but for the sake of shares, sales from 3rd part merchants are attributed to the marketplace brand operator.See All of Our Definitions
This report originates from Passport, our E-Commerce (Goods) research and analysis database.
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