E-commerce has outpaced the growth rates of all other retail channels for a long time, but the slowdown in 2022, due to contracting purchasing power, along with unprecedented inflation rates not seen for decades, has brought a new era, with extremely careful shopping habits due to less disposable income to spend. This is expected to prevent stronger growth in the channel in the forecast period, with growth rates set to be lower than at the peak in 2020 and 2021.
The early days of e-commerce were mostly limited to consumer electronics, but this created strong online brands, which have gradually evolved into superstores (e.g.
The increases in delivery costs in 2022 (both fuel and wages) highlighted the importance of finding cost-effective alternative delivery channels without negatively affecting the customer experience. The extensive enlargement of parcel locker networks to achieve higher coverage seems to be the most obvious direction.
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Retail e-commerce is the sale of consumer goods to the general public via the internet, wherein consumers purchase goods online through a web platform. Please note that this includes sales through mobile phones and tablets (i.e. m-commerce). Sales data is attributed to the country where the consumer is based, rather than where the retailer is based. The definition of retail 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 sizes/shares. Please note that all "homeshopping" sales - i.e. sales of consumer goods to the general public via mail order catalogues, TV shopping and direct mail - are also now classified as retail e-commerce sales.See All of Our Definitions
This report originates from Passport, our Retail E-Commerce research and analysis database.
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