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European e-commerce still growing but challenges lie ahead

European e-commerce still growing but challenges lie ahead

In 2021, European e-commerce grew by 13 % to €718 billion euros. The growth rate has remained stable, though it has risen slightly compared to 2020.

The 2021 B2C turnover figures show that e-commerce continues to grow, despite lockdowns being lifted and consumers’ ability to visit physical stores again.

After the peak of the COVID-19 pandemic, e-commerce has become even more firmly anchored in the economy and society.

Two trends can be identified

On the one hand, the normalisation and stabilisation of the sales compared to the exceptional previous year: E-commerce continued to grow in 2021 and is also forecast to do so in 2022, with growth slowly stabilising.

On the other hand, the report identifies that consumers are being more careful in their spending. The effects of the war in Ukraine, inflation, disrupted global supply chains and a general feeling of uncertainty, are bringing the growth figures back to pre-pandemic levels.

Nonetheless, the fact that e-commerce sales are only experiencing a small decline so far shows that the digital commerce sector has become indispensable and very resilient. Additionally, the online services industry, such as e-tourism, events and ticketing, experienced a steady recovery during this past year.

“In the past two years, retailers have gained a lot of experience in digitalisation. This acceleration was significantly pushed by the pandemic, during which e-commerce and retail played an essential role,” says Luca Cassetti, Secretary General of Ecommerce Europe.

“In 2022, Europe has, unfortunately, become the stage of a major conflict. Though still difficult to evaluate, the war in Ukraine will have major consequences on the European economy, as well as on e-commerce markets.

Many of our members have already reported declines in consumer purchasing power and confidence, mostly due to high energy prices, inflation and uncertainty about the future.”

“The retail and wholesale sector is transforming significantly to become more digital, more sustainable and to attract new talent,” continues Christel Delberghe, Director General of EuroCommerce.

“We estimate that businesses will have to double their investment up to 2030 successfully achieve that transformation. Having a digital presence is becoming a matter of survival for many companies.

Our customers expect us to deliver a seamless experience, offering various combinations of online and offline interactions. Supporting SMEs’ digitalisation will require dedicated support, technical advice and building awareness of the various tools to facilitate an online presence.

We will be monitoring the implementation and enforcement of the EU’s Digital Agenda carefully to ensure that Europe provides an environment conducive to innovation while ensuring fair competition.”

 

The post European e-commerce still growing but challenges lie ahead appeared first on Payments Cards & Mobile.

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