EU e-commerce turnover up 17% in 2014

14 Dec '15
5 min read

Enterprises realised 17 per cent of their total turnover from e-sales during 2014, consisting of orders via a website or "apps" or via EDI-type messages, according to the EU's e-commerce statistics.

However, the turnover realised from EDI-type sales was 12 per cent of total turnover, while the turnover from web sales was only 5 per cent. From the 5 per cent, 3 per cent came from e-sales to other enterprises and public authorities while 2 per cent came from e-sales to private consumers.

E-commerce enables enterprises to establish their presence in the market at national level and also to extend their economic activities beyond borders in order to pursue opportunities elsewhere. Moreover, e-commerce has the potential to reshape the European Single Market for enterprises and private consumers by enabling price and product-related comparisons in a borderless market environment.

However, in 2014 in the EU, while almost all enterprises making electronic sales (19 per cent) reported that they sold to the markets in their own countries (18 per cent), only 8 per cent of enterprises made e-sales to other EU countries.

In 2014, more than twice as many enterprises engaged in e-purchases than in e-sales in Europe, according to the EU's statistics. During the year, 40 per cent of enterprises in the EU made purchases electronically. In the same period, only 19 per cent of enterprises made electronic sales.

There was a significant variation in the share of enterprises conducting e-sales and the turnover from the e-sales according to enterprise size.

During 2014, 43 per cent of large enterprises made e-sales corresponding to 24 per cent of total turnover in this size class. Similarly, 28 per cent of medium sized enterprises made e-sales corresponding to 13 per cent of total turnover in this size class. In contrast, 17 per cent of small enterprises engaged in e-sales, corresponding to only 6 per cent of the turnover of such enterprises.

During the period 2010 to 2014 there was a small increase in the percentage of enterprises that had e-sales (+4 percentage points) as well as in the enterprises' turnover from e-sales (+3 percentage points).

In 2014, the percentage of enterprises making purchases electronically varied widely from country to country, ranging from 11 per cent in Greece to 68 per cent in Austria. Similarly, the percentage of enterprises with e-sales ranged from 7 per cent in Greece to 32 per cent in Ireland, followed by Sweden (28 per cent) and Denmark (27 per cent).

During 2014, among all EU member states, the percentage of turnover realised from e-sales ranged from 1 per cent in Greece to 37 per cent in Ireland, followed by the Czech Republic (30 per cent), Finland and Slovakia (both 21 per cent).

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