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2015 started better than 2014 for ecommerce in France

Online sales in France grew by 13.7% during the first three months of 2015. The growth was stronger than a year earlier, when the ecommerce industry grew by 11%. The key drivers for this growth could be the dramatic increase in the number of transactions and the rise of marketplaces and mcommerce.

The Fédération E-commerce et Vente À Distance (Fevad) has published some new data about the French ecommerce industry and things look well! During the first three months of this year, the number of online transactions grew by 18% to 193 million. To put this in perspective: every second, 25 transactions take place on ecommerce sites in France.

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Taken in account the online sales in Q1 also grew harder than last year (13.7% versus 11%), it might come as a surprise the French ecommerce industry is reflecting a revival. Many observers thought the sector may have reached a certain ceiling, because quarter after quarter, the growth of online sales seemed to have a tendency to level off.

164,200 active ecommerce sites in France
But perhaps, ecommerce in France has just entered a new phase, LSA writes. Now online sales reached a value of 15.2 billion euros in the first three months of this year. That’s about 2 billion euros more than during the same period last year. The number of French ecommerce websites also continued to grow, with 14% year-on-year. In France, there are currently about 164,200 active ecommerce sites, against 14,500 ten years ago. The number of online shoppers also increased. Last year, 846,000 people bought something online for the first time, so now there are 35 million online consumers in France.

The Fevad also has had some declining numbers to share. The average basket value continues to decline, something that’s been happening the last four years. Whereas the average transaction value was 82 euros during the first quarter of 2014, this is now 79 euros. But this doesn’t have to mean bad news, as a decline in the average basket value, especially coupled with the aforementioned exponential growth in the number of transactions, could mean ecommerce is becoming more and more a common thing to do for consumers. They don’t only shop online for major purchases anymore, but also order small items and do that more frequently.

Growth of market places and mobile transactions
Fevad also looked at the top 40 ecommerce websites in France and these retailers achieved an average turnover growth of 12% in the first quarter of this year. Also, sales in market places grew by 66%, which now account for a quarter of sales volume from websites that offer this type of service. Mobile transactions on smartphones and tablet, increased by 44% year-on-year.

In 2014, online sales increased by 11%. For this year, a growth of 10% is expected, so the ecommerce industry could grow to be worth 62.4 billion euros. But perhaps, with a start that’s better than expected, this figure could be even higher at the end of this year.

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