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Spanish E-Commerce: Optimistically on the rise

In a recent study, Red.es and the Spanish E-Commerce Association (AECE-FECEMD) have come to some very exciting conclusions about the growth of e-commerce in Spain. While 1,837 million euros is relatively modest in comparison to European counterparts, the number indicates a 20% increase from last year’s internet consumer spending.

The second study of its kind, shows that nearly 4,000,000 (11.2 % of the Spanish population) over the age of 14 are making online purchases, leaving behind an average of 464 euros per person (an increase of 6%). Since last year, the number of internet users, converted into online customers has increased by nearly 500,000.

The director of Red.es, Ramon Palacio, recognized that the numbers still leave plenty to look forward to, but because average Spanish consumer falling under the young, mid-upper class and educated label, there is hope that Spain will soon join the rest of the European (EU) crowd.

The study underlines a recurring obstacle: In Spain people continue to feel uncomfortable and insecure buying online, while there is really no reason for them doubt the security of the transactions. 28% still feel uneasy about the payment process and 20% are reluctant to give out their personal information online. Nevertheless, online transactions are relying more and more on the credit card (65.4%), while the popular COD method has progressively declined(18.5%).

On the other hand, 58.9% recognize that the reason they did make an online purchase was because of the comfort and simplicity of buying online; 27.2% believe that buying online opens the door to more competitive prices and promotions and 18.1% claim that they are able to access a much wider selection of products.

Although minor (1%), there was even an increase in international transactions—52% of their online spending goes to international businesses. The reason behind these numbers, of course is a wider selection and lack of these products in Spain. While the increase is small, the implications are not to be taken lightly.

The leading, in-demand products? That is no surprise. Travel, electronics and books are the persistent forerunners; 30.4% of total spending went to airline, bus and boat tickets, 14% to electronics, and 12.7% to books.

80.4% of survey takers admit that their online purchase experience has met their expectations–the potential for continuous growth is more than abundant, but as Red.es and AECE underline: the key lies in educating and encouraging the average internet user to feel more confident and comfortable with online transactions.

For more interesting data, download the complete B2C Ecommerce Study 2005 (in Spanish).



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