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BLOG: 10 Key Facts About Global e-Commerce

Posted by in China, Digital, Latest News, Marketing, Trends

Global retail e-Commerce keeps on clicking. Here are 10 top facts about global e-Commerce you need to know:

  1. Global e-commerce sales are set to rise, although the rate of growth will slow: It is expected to rise from nearly US$1 trillion in 2015 to nearly US$1.6 trillion in 2018.
  1. Best place for e-commerce: The US just overtook China as the world’s best place for e-commerce, because it offers an irresistible mix of market size, growth potential, developed infrastructure, and its residents’ eagerness to purchase online.
  1. European e-commerce market seeing strong growth: Ecommerce is set to boom across Europe and North America this year. Online sales are forecast to grow by 16.2% in the UK, while sales across Europe are tipped to grow by 18.4%.
  1. Brits the most frequent online shoppers in Europe: Average Brit expected to spend £1,174 this year online, compared to £820 average spend by European online shoppers.
  1. Sweden’s e-commerce market is the slowest growing in Europe, although it is the most mature. Almost 7 in 10 Swedes shop on the web.
  1. Online spending in China is estimated to reach US$1 trillion by 2019. The growth will be fueled by mobile apps and improving logistics networks, which have helped e-commerce companies reach new customers in smaller cities.
  2. China’s huge role in Asia’s e-commerce market: Currently, 36% of all e-commerce sales in the world come from Asia—and 60% of that comes from China. 
  1. Mobile technology plays a big role in the Asian market’s growth: With Asia’s high mobile Internet penetration rate, 74% of Chinese said they would use their smartphones for price comparisons when making online purchases, compared with 43% from the rest of the world.
  2. Social media is the key to success for e-commerce companies in China. Noticeably, China’s upper middle class women are driving social media and online shopping, spending US$3 trillion annually in China alone.
  3. What Asian consumers buy online: Consumer electronics (69%), books (67%) and clothing and apparel (63%) are the most common types of products purchased online in Asia, with luxury goods only accounting for 6% of total purchases.


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Source: Euromonitor, A.T. Kearney’s global e-commerce index, Forrester, Retail Research, 

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Sally Maier-Yip is a seasoned cross-cultural Public Relations Strategist with a mission to help companies build successful business with PR. She loves running her UK-Asia PR agency, 11K Consulting, which specialises in helping British clients unlock the Chinese consumer market and helping Chinese brands increase their presence in the UK. To get in touch with Sally, email her at

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