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E-commerce in Germany hits new high in 2020, now worth €83.3 billion

E-commerce in Germany was worth €83.3 billion in 2020. This is an increase of 14.6% compared to 2019. The growth is significant, as the average growth over the previous three years was ‘just’ 11.3%.

Of course, this significant increase in gross sales of goods in German e-commerce has a lot to do with the outbreak of the coronavirus and the resulting lockdowns. Last year, e-commerce in Germany was worth €72.6 billion.

The development of e-commerce in Germany

The new numbers come from e-commerce association Bevh, which also explains that last year, about one in eight euros of household expenditure on goods were spent online.

e-commerce in Germany

And even though grocery stores, drugstores, and pharmacies remained open in Germany, goods such as groceries and pharmaceutical products still recorded the strongest growth in online retail.

Online fashion is the most popular product category in Germany, followed by consumer media and electronics. Especially in the categories ‘consumer electronics & computers’ and ‘media’ (books, music, movies, video games).

German consumers are keener on shopping online instead of shopping offline. According to a study from RetailX, 85% of German citizens have shopped online during 2020. And 95% of the population has been online that year.

1 in 3 online buyers is older than 60 years

Another interesting finding is that almost one in three online buyers in 2020 were older than 60 years. A year ago, this age group accounted for less than a quarter of e-commerce sales in Germany. In this country, now four out of ten online customers order more than once a week.

‘This development will not be reversed’

“The corona pandemic has significantly accelerated the development of trade towards e-commerce, and our industry has fulfilled its performance promise,” says Gero Furchheim, President, Bevh.

“This development will not be reversed. The social and political debate must therefore fundamentally change its perspective: In the future, e-commerce and its processes will be the starting point from which customers begin their shopping.

City centers and retailers need this digital foundation in order to offer their customers added value with their stationery offers. Urban development must finally face this reality and consistently involve those who shape the new trade.”


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