‘Everyone in Ireland is shopping overseas’

‘Everyone in Ireland is shopping overseas’

International Internet Day is celebrated every year on October 29, but Ireland has its own Internet Day. On October 27 this event took place in the Mansion House in Dublin and was hosted by the .ie Domain Registry. This day shows that things don’t look so bright for ecommerce in Ireland; too many consumers shop online at foreign stores.

That’s also the most important message serial entrepreneur Emma Sinclair shared during Ireland’s Internet Day. “Everyone in Ireland is shopping overseas”, she said, according to the Galway Independent. “Consumers in Ireland are expected to spend 487 billion euros across Europe in 2016, but Ireland’s share of this digital marketplace is worth only 9 billion euros.”

‘Don’t wait, go online!’

Sinclair was one of the speakers of the event, where Irish small and medium-sized enterprises learnt how they could take advantage of ecommerce and grow their revenue and customer base. Among the other speakers were Dutch ecommerce expert Jorij Abraham (from EcommerceWiki) and Swedish entrepreneur Simon Saneback.

The main issue is that many businesses don’t sell their products or services via the internet. “Only 25 percent of Irish SMEs can sell online”, Sinclair explained. “There are so many online free resources that can help you build a website. I’m a massive believer in going to market before you’re ready; get out to market quickly, even if that means a substandard website. You will be doing yourself a disservice if you wait around for everything to be perfect.”

The Irish politician Hildegarde Naughton said digital business is critical to economic growth and prosperity in the country. She added that the delivery of high-speed broadband is a top priority for the government.