According to GlobalData’s Online Consumer Payments Analytics, the largest European market in terms of e-commerce transaction value in 2015 was the UK ($141.3bn), followed by France ($68.3bn) and Germany ($62.7bn). The markets that reported the smallest values are Norway ($8.5bn), Poland ($7.4bn), and Turkey ($7.0bn). However, the countries that reported the largest increase in e-commerce transaction value (CAGR) from 2014 to 2016 are Turkey (27.7%) and Belgium (22.5%), followed by the Netherlands (20.1%) and Italy (18.7%), while Russia was reported to have the lowest CAGR over the same period (5.8%).
In terms of markets by payment tools, debit cards reported the largest share of e-commerce transaction value in 2015 in Denmark, France, Sweden, and the UK. However, in most of the other surveyed European markets, credit cards were the preferred payment instruments in 2015, with Turkey reporting the largest share of e-commerce transactions (53%), followed by Belgium (35%) and the UK (30%). Primary among the reasons for choosing credit cards as payment tools for e-commerce are convenience and comfort. These choices are largely explained by the ability to control and manage finances that is offered by credit cards. Security was generally ranked third as a reason for choosing credit cards, since alternative tools like PayPal are usually considered by consumers to be more secure than credit cards.
Interestingly, Belgium and Turkey reported the highest increases in e-commerce transaction value (CAGR) during 2014–16 and at the same time they are the countries where credit cards have the largest shares in e-commerce transaction by value in 2015. Although relatively small markets in terms of transaction value (below $10bn), both countries have significant growth potential in the future. Consumers will increasingly use credit cards as payment tools online as they become more comfortable with making use of the enhanced control and security features provided by these payment tools.
By Nicolae Bacila, Consumer Payments Analyst