Just 69 percent of small and medium-sized enterprises in Ireland have a website. And only 32 percent of these online companies sell products or services online. By not selling online, SMEs are losing their share of the Ireland’s €12.3 billion ecommerce market.
Ecommerce in Ireland is expected to be worth 2.2 billion euros at the end of 2019. The country’s online retail industry is set to increase by 12.9 percent this year, thanks to product differentiation, a growth in the mobile market and online retailers investing in their websites.
Supermarket chain Lidl has extended its online grocery shopping and home delivery service in Ireland. The service, operated by grocery delivery startup Buymie, was already active in Dublin and now extends into the commuter counties surrounding the capital.
Consumers in Ireland are rapidly increasing their usage of card payments. At the same time, paying with cash is getting less popular. The fast growth in popularity of card payments goes hand in hand with a significant increase in online shopping in the past year.
An Post, the state-owned postal company of Ireland, has reported a jump in revenue last year. The company’s sales increased by almost 7 percent to 897 million euros. Although there was a predictable decline in its traditional mail business, the company’s parcel volumes grew further.
Zalando is introducing shipping costs in the United Kingdom, Ireland and Spain. The German fashion giant has taken this step after an earlier test in Italy. Although Zalando claims there are no plans to further expand this measure, it seems like the end of an era.
Enterprise Ireland, a government organization aimed to let Irish enterprises grow, has opened a ecommerce fund to accelerate the online offering of retailers in Ireland and to increase their competitiveness. The 1.25 million euros fund opened last Wednesday and will remain open for six weeks.
Ecommerce platform provider xSellco has launched eDesk, a helpdesk that integrates with several ecommerce marketplaces, shopping carts and social channels, and should help online retailers to scale their customer support strategy.
Asendia, a joint venture of La Poste and Swiss Post, and Irish postal operator An Post have formed a partnership to help cross-border retailers exploit ecommerce in Ireland. The partnership lets Asendia offer retailers access to the last mile delivery of An Post, from the 15 countries where Asendia operates.
Zalando is finally expanding again. The German fashion company will open online stores in Ireland and the Czech Republic this summer. These are the first two countries Zalando will enter since 2013. Both Ireland and the Czech Republic will be served by the company’s existing logistics sites.
Ecommerce websites in Ireland welcomed a third consecutive year of revenue growth in 2017. Last year, the total online revenue of these companies increased by 45 percent year-on-year. Increased employment, improved broadband and browsing experiences have led to this growth.
The majority of consumers in Ireland also turn to the United Kingdom for online shopping. The fact that the ecommerce industry in the UK offers more choice, is the main advantage to shopping from the UK, nearly half of those who shop with UK retailers say.
DHL has further expanded its European parcel network. The postal company is now able to offer its cross-border services for online customers in Ireland and Romania, while Croatia and Bulgaria will join the network in November.
Gourmondo, a German online distributor of unusual foods, is expanding in Europe. After launching in Germany and the Netherlands, the ecommerce website is now also available in the United Kingdom, Ireland and Austria. Consumers from these countries can now also buy wines and specialty foods online.
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.