Northern European web shoppers spent €1,780 each in 2013

Norwegian consumers have been splurging on online goods and services. [SormKatt/Flickr]

Northern Europe’s 19.7 million shoppers last year spent €200 more online than other EU consumers, about €1,780 each in total, a report has found.  

The Ecommerce Europe research focused on business to consumer sales in Iceland, Norway, Denmark, Sweden, Finland, Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania.

Total e-commerce for online goods and services for the region was €33.2 billion in 2013. That figure is expected to grow 10.7% to €36.8 billion in 2014, the report claimed.

Norway’s online sales amounted to €8.9 billion. Denmark (€8.3 billion), the 2012 leader, slipped to third behind Sweden, €8.6 billion. Finland came fourth.

Lithuania, Iceland, Latvia and Estonia were far behind, making between €100 and €300 million in 2013.

Norwegian e-shoppers spent the most, shelling out €2,688 per consumer. Denmark and Finland followed with €2.149 and €1.996, respectively. The average European e-shopper spent €1,376 and the average for the EU28 was €1,500.

Estonia (€542), Latvia (€545) and Lithuania (€766) lag behind because they had lower online retail infrastructure, such as broadband, in remote regions, the trade association said. 

Despite that, 87% of Northern Europe’s estimated 32.2 million people have access to the Internet, the research found.The number of online users was estimated at 29.2 million for Northern Europe last year.

Iceland had Internet penetration of 97% in 2013, followed by Denmark and Sweden, which both have 95% penetration.

The figures are based on the Global Online Measurement Standard for E-commerce) and were calculated with the national associations Ecommerce Europe represents and market research agency Gfk.

ECommerce Europe infographic for Northern Europe 2013 [EcommerceEurope]ECommerce Europe infographic for Northern Europe 2013 [EcommerceEurope]

China overtakes Europe

The Asia-Pacific region’s e-commerce sector, driven by the huge Chinese market, outstripped Europe’s online shopping industry for the first time last year, according to a report published in June.

But the European market grew by 16% to € 363.1 billion in 2013 and is expected to bring revenue of €425.5 billion this year.

In 2013, online sales to consumers in the EU were worth €276.5 billion, 87.6% of the total figure for Europe, the European B2C E-commerce Report 2014 said.  

Despite that, cross-border sales in the EU remained stubbornly low at just 12%, according to European Commission figures.

The Commission wants to increase that to 20% by 2020 as part of its Digital Agenda targets (here). The executive sees the digital economy as part of the solution to Europe’s sluggish recovery from the financial crisis and high unemployment. 

The digital economy is worth 2.2% of Europe’s total 2013 Gross Domestic Product of €16.4 trillion. That percentage is set to double by 2016 and to triple by 2020, the association said.

E-commerce is trading in services and goods over the internet.

The European Commission sees the digital economy as part of the solution to Europe's sluggish recovery from the financial crisis and high unemployment. 

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