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Ecommerce in Germany

Information about ecommerce in GermanyGermany is Europe’s largest economy and after Russia it’s also Europe’s most populous country. After World War II Germany was divided into two different states: West Germany (officially called the Federal Republic of Germany) and East Germany (the German Democratic Republic). The western part sought established links with other Western European countries, while the communist GDR was more connected with countries like the Soviet Union, Hungary and Poland. As of July 2013 it’s estimated 81.1 million people live in Germany, of which 42% is between 25 and 54 years old.

COUNTRY
GERMANY
Population 81.1 million people
– % internet users 85%
Online sales €103.4 billion (predicted for 2020)
Online stores worth mentioning: Otto, Zalando, Mediamarkt

Content:

Ecommerce events in Germany

Every year there are several ecommerce events being organized in Germany. We have a handy ecommerce events calendar, where you can find all the major online retail events in Europe. But you can also check out only the ecommerce events in Germany.

Ecommerce customers in Germany

PAYMENT METHODS – Online shoppers in Germany (47 million in 2015) are keen on using invoice, for years this was their preferred online payment method. A study in 2020 showed that, among consumers who have a preferred payment method, PayPal was the most popular choice. Other popular methods are invoice, credit card, and direct debit.

PRODUCT CATEGORIES – Online fashion is the most popular product category in Germany, followed by consumer media and electronics. Especially in the categories ‘consumer electronics & computers’ and ‘media’ (books, music, movies, video games) German consumers are keener on shopping online instead of shopping offline. According to a study from RetailX, 85 percent of German citizens have shopped online during 2020. And 95 percent of the population has been online that year.

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RETURNS – Germany is known for its high return percentage. Some reports claim that 50% of all orders gets sent back. This is important to know if you want to do business in Germany.

The ecommerce market in Germany

In April 2019, Handelsverband Deutschland shared some interesting statistics about ecommerce in Germany. The market was worth 53.3 billion euros in 2018 and is expected to reach 57.8 billion euros in 2019. Another study, by RetailX, shows that ecommerce in Germany was expected to reach 103.4 billion euros in 2020.

And according to a study from Deutsche Card Services, the east-west difference in German online retailing has vanished. In terms of purchasing activity nowadays there is virtually no disparity between the western and eastern parts of Germany any more.

Development of ecommerce in Germany (2013-2020)
The development of ecommerce in Germany (2013-2020).

Big online stores in Germany

Ecommerce in Germany seems all about two big players: American retailer Amazon and German-founded Otto. They own almost half of the online market, so it’s pretty clear that it’s quite hard for smaller merchants to make a difference. The top 10 online stores in Germany are: Amazon (€8.82 billion), Otto (€2.96 billion), Zalando (€1.3 billion), Notebooksbilliger (€752 million), MediaMarkt (€734 million), Lidl (€594 million), Bonprix (€591 million), Cyberport (€533 million), Conrad (€494 million) and Alternate (€472 million).

Latest news about Germany

Bevh wants retailers to temporarily work on Sundays

The German E-Commerce and Distance Selling Trade Association (Bevh) wants a temporary lifting of the ban on Sunday work in retail and logistics. The association thinks that, especially with regards to the upcoming Christmas shopping period, this is necessary to stop the spread of the coronavirus.

Razor raises €25 million to acquire and scale Amazon brands

Razor Group, a startup from Germany that acquires and scales Amazon brands, has raised 25 million euros in a new round. This happened just twelve weeks after it received initial startup financing of five million euros.

Amazon opens first European air freight center

Amazon has opened its very first air freight center in Europe. The 20,000 square meter cargo facility is located at the Leipzig-Halle Airport in Germany. It will be used to sort parcels, and to load and unload trucks and aircraft.

69% of Germans only want to shop online on Black Friday

Black Friday 2020 is gonna be very different from earlier editions. A recent survey, for example, shows that 69 percent of shoppers in Germany only want to shop online on Black Friday, with just 11 percent shopping exclusively in-store.

Zalando acquires body scanning tool Fision

Zalando has announced it acquired Fision, a Swiss company that offers a mobile body scanning solution. For Zalando, the acquisition is part of its investment in the customer experience.

Read all our articles about ecommerce in Germany.

Last update: June 2020