71% of internet users in the EU shopped online in 2019

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Nearly three-quarters of internet users in the EU made online purchases in 2019. The share of online shoppers in internet users is growing, with the highest proportions being found in the group of 16 to 24 year olds(78%) and that of 25 to 54 year olds (76%).

This can be concluded after the latest published research from Eurostat. The proportion of online shoppers varies considerable across Europe. In Romania for example, this share is only 29 percent, while in the United Kingdom it was 91 percent. UK left EU on January 31st. It is worth mentioning that Serbia (non-EU country) is in front of Romania and Bulgaria with 34%.


Popular product categories in EU

Clothes and sport goods are the most popular product categories in the EU, as 65 percent of online shoppers purchased one or more of these articles at least once via the internet. This is also the case for the group of 16 to 24 year olds (73%), while those aged 25-54 lead with online purchase of travel and holiday accommodations and the older age group (55-74) lead in buying books, magazines and newspapers, together with those aged 25-54 (35 % both).

In terms of frequency, the highest proportion of e-shoppers made purchases in the three months prior to the survey three to five times (34 %), while 32 % did so once or twice. In terms of amount spent, the highest proportion of e-buyers (42 %) bought goods or services for a total of between EUR 100 to EUR 499. Furthermore, 35 % of e-buyers made purchases from sellers in other EU countries, compared with 29 % in 2014.

Shopping cross-border

According to Eurostat’s data, three out of ten online shoppers in the EU purchased across the border in another EU member state. This share (30%) was 1% higher than in 2014, 29% e-buyers did this. As Eurostat puts it: “Cross-border online purchases can be an indicator of the smooth functioning of the single market for ecommerce and the extent to which consumers make use of wider choices and lower prices”.

A large majority of online shoppers, 87 percent, made online purchases from sellers in their own country, which is one percentage points less than in 2014. As shown below, the share of purchases from sellers in other member states grew from 29 to 35 percent, and that from sellers outside the EU increased from 17 percent in 2014 to 27 percent last year.

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