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6 in 10 Belgians order online

More and more Belgians buy their stuff online. Especially clothes and shoes appear to be very popular products in Belgium to order via the internet. Also, more elder people bought online and for someone to decide if he wants to buy online, product prices are a key factor.

Comeos, the Belgian federation of distributors, interviewed more than thousand Belgian customers in April this year in order to get a more detailed view about the ecommerce industry in Belgium. Compared to last year, there are now 8 percent more Belgian people that at least one ordered something online.

Especially in the group over the age of 44 years, the increase is remarkable. According to Dominique Michel from Comeos the differences between age groups are vanishing. “We’ve finally made the step towards late majority”, he says. “This is evident from the fact that people are buying more online (the number of people that order on a monthly basis increased from 16% to 24%), and while online they spend more, an average of 170 euros per month. On an annual basis that’s 2040 euros, thirty percent more than when we took over first survey, two years ago.”

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Nine in ten Belgians think they’ll buy something online in the next twelve months. When asked what kind of products they already order the most online, consumers say they buy clothes and shoes a lot. “But hotels, travel and books are also very popular”, Michel says. “But we think the success of the online sales of shoes and apparel is because of the the rise of pure players and especially the way the traditional retailers responded. We’ve noticed that the retailers in Belgium really have stepped up their online efforts.”

For online consumers the price of a product seems to be the number one reason to buy something online. “But time saving and convenience still remain important factors. For us it’s clear why consumers now think the price often plays a crucial role. The market matured and so customers from the very beginning are now also taking some more time to find the cheapest products and the lowest prices. People trust online shops more and more and delivery isn’t often a problem anymore, so now they’ll look at the prices.”

In the report it also became clear that credit cards are becoming less popular while the use of online bank payments grew (from 12% to 22% of the online customers).

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