Mainland Europe to outstrip UK in ecommerce growth

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UK ecommerce
// The UK’s ecommerce sector expected to grow 9% a year to €231.2bn (£208bn) by 2021
// However, many mainland European markets are likely to outstrip this growth rate.
// The UK still expected to maintain position as the largest ecommerce market in Europe

New research has shown that while the UK is likely to maintain its position as the largest ecommerce market in Europe, its growth may be outstripped by 10 other on the continent.

According to JP Morgan, the UK’s online retail sector is expected to grow nine per cent per year over the next three years – with the market projected to be worth €231.2 billion (£208 billion) by 2021.

The UK currently represents more than 30 per cent of the total European ecommerce market.

JP Morgan’s 2019 Global Payments Trends Reports, which analysed ecommerce and payment trends in 34 countries, including 18 in Europe, reveals that the UK’s growth rate may be outstripped by 10 other European countries predicted to experience double-digit growth between now and 2021.

Of these, the Czech Republic, Italy and Spain rank highest with growth forecast at 16 per cent, 14 per cent and 13.5 per cent respectively.

Country ecommerce market size  Predicted CAGR (2018 – 2021)
UK 178.5 billion 9%
France 81.7 billion 11%
Germany 73 billion 7%
Spain 30.4 billion 14%
Netherlands 22.5 billion 11%
Italy 21.2 billion 14%
Denmark 15.4 billion 11%
Sweden 12 billion 9%
Norway 10.9 billion 13%
Switzerland 10.1 billion 8%
Belgium 10.1 billion 9%
Poland 9.9 billion 10%
Austria 9.2 billion 8%
Finland 8.5 billion 11%
Ireland 7 billion 9%
Czech Republic 4.4 billion 16%
Portugal 4.3 billion 12%
Luxembourg 0.7 billion 8%

JP Morgan’s report also indicates that France and Germany are the second and third largest ecommerce markets respectively, together representing a third of all ecommerce activity in Europe.

The UK is expected to experience a deceleration in ecommerce sales growth in the coming years because of market maturity, Brexit-related uncertainty and its receptiveness to seasonal trends, major public events and holidays.

“The UK remains the titan of the European ecommerce space, dwarfing the next largest markets of France and Germany,” JP Morgan merchant services managing director Ray McDonnell said.

“While the UK’s ecommerce market will remain healthy, this year’s exit from the EU and the maturity of the market may slow that growth somewhat.

“We expect stronger growth to occur in newer online economies like Italy and the Czech Republic which have the conditions for significant market expansion.”

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