Global ecommerce market report: ecommerce sales trends and growth statistics for 2021

Ecommerce has been a bright spot among retail channels during the coronavirus, as consumers became reliant on digital transactions amid physical store closures and fear of infection. However, the impact on ecommerce retail spending has not been felt evenly across the world.

Retail Ecommerce Sales Growth Worldwide, by Region, 2020
eMarketer

Global Ecommerce Industry Trends

Ecommerce sales will continue to accelerate in many individual national markets, but not overall. Global totals will show a downshift for ecommerce mainly because of substantial deceleration in two large markets: China and India.

Comparatively, Germany’s mobile sales are growing faster than ever and more than half of UK ecommerce sales will comes from mobile – specifically smartphones. 

And in countries like the United States and France, ecommerce has been revised upwards due to account for a boost from the pandemic.

Global Ecommerce Sales & Statistics

Following the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic, Insider Intelligence decreased its retail sales forecast to a 16.5% growth rate—reducing the overall outlook for retail ecommerce sales by $190.79 billion. Overall, ecommerce sales will bring in $3.914 trillion this year.

Asia-Pacific and North America have led the regional totals for both brick-and-mortar and ecommerce sales, followed by Western Europe. Due in part to China’s dominance, Asia-Pacific has gained a significant lead in ecommerce with 62.6% share, over North America and Western Europe, who are expected to have shares of 19.1% and 12.7%, respectively.

While some regions experienced tremendous growth in certain sectors of retail, we have adjusted our ecommerce estimates down to $3.914 trillion, as the deceleration of global retail in 2020 has surely impacted overall global retail sales. 

In the Global Ecommerce 2020 Report, eMarketer explores where certain countries and regions are expected fall in respect to retail ecommerce sales, how the pandemic has shaped our estimates, and how ecommerce will fair both globally and nationally for the remainder of the year.

Here are some key takeaways from the report:

  • While leading eplatforms like Amazon saw in uptick in ecommerce sales during the pandemic, slower delivery times in countries like Canada, allowed other retailers to claim greater shares. 
  • Brick-and-mortar has been downgraded to account for demand shock, an unprecedented shift towards digital buying, and anticipated challenges as physical stores gradually recover from closures and interruptions to cash flow and supply chains.
  • China will surpass the United States as the world’s largest retail market this year. Latin America won’t be as lucky as the coronavirus further aggravated their previous economic struggles, causing a great decline in foot traffic as consumers were forced to prioritize essential items. 
  • Digitally booked home delivery and click-and-collect options have grown in the UK, but some of their retailers won’t survive. The news is better for the US, where most retailers are expected to extend their ecommerce success.

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