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Ecommerce in Germany grew by 7% in 2014

The latest study from Bundesverband E-commerce und Versandhandel Deutschland shows that German consumers ordered goods worth 49 billion euros via distance-selling last year. The majority happened via the Internet. Online shopping grew by 7 percent, well above the growth of the total retail sector.

BEVH looked at the online and traditional mail order sales from last year. It was worth 49.1 billion euros, of which 41.9 billion euros happened on ecommerce sales. So it accounted for 85.3% of the overall turnover in the distance-selling industry. Last year, this figure was 81 percent. And that leads to the conclusion the ecommerce industry in Germany grew by 7 percent in 2014.

“The development of last year shows us two things: the online and mail order commerce has established itself as an integral part of the retail sector and is thus also vulnerable to economic fluctuations”, said Gero Furchheim, president of the BEVH. “The fact that despite the difficult environment last year has led to the online trade continuing to grow is at the same time a clear indication of the industry’s potential.”

BEVH on ecommerce in Germany 2014

Clothing still most popular product category
Clothing was again by far the most popular product category, as it accounted for sales worth 11.9 billion euros last year. Consumer electronics (€5 billion) and books (€4.1 billion) follow in second and third place. “”At the same time product categories like furniture and decorative items (€2.5 billion) have recorded significant increases in sales and are apparently appealing to more and more consumers.”

Multi-channel and mobile commerce are continuing to pick up speed, the study shows. Especially younger shoppers are increasingly purchasing using their mobile phones. The association believes that the development of this sector is far from complete and the growth potential is not exploited. And it also states that the multi-channel merchants, who respond to and reach customers across multiple channels, are the clear winners. The online marketplaces however, have recorded a decline in sales.

Multichannel Germany

Renewed increase in 2015
Although the growth of the industry was slowed recognizable compared to previous years, the BEVH expects a renewed increase for 2015. It predicts a 5% rise to 51.6 billion euros for the total online and mail order industry, while ecommerce alone will probably increase by 12% to 46.9 billion euros.

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