As the internet has exploded in popularity in recent years, eCommerce has completely changed the way we shop. More and more people are shopping online—so many, in fact, that global eCommerce sales have now officially passed the trillion-dollar mark. Worldwide eCommerce sales jumped 21.1% in 2012, topping $1 trillion for the first time ever, and are expected to grow another 18.3% in 2013.
North America leads sales, Asia leads growth
So who’s doing all this online shopping? North America remains king in the realm of online shopping, accounting for a whopping $364.66 billion of the world’s total through the end of 2012. In terms of overall eCommerce growth, however, Asia reigns supreme. While North American sales grew 13.9% in 2012, the Asia-Pacific region grew an impressive 33%, bringing their eCommerce grand total to $332.46 billion. With projected growth of 30% expected in 2013, Asia’s sales will surpass those of North America.
As you might have already guessed, China is behind much of Asia’s eCommerce growth. With a massive population and a growing middle class with increasing access to the Internet, they have more eCommerce consumers than any other nation in the world. These consumers will help China overtake Japan as the top eCommerce market in the region in 2013. Though China’s average spending per eCommerce consumer is just $670 (compared with $2,466 in the U.S.), their number of online shoppers is expected to double in the next few years, which will only boost Asia’s numbers even further.
The U.S. still big
Though Asia will replace North America as the world’s leading eCommerce market, the United States is expected to maintain its position as the nation with the highest overall sales. Other countries might have higher numbers of eCommerce shoppers or higher per-customer spending, but our combination of the two will allow us to stay on top, at least for now.
Why is eCommerce so successful?
So what exactly is driving the insane growth of eCommerce As anyone who has ever shopped online knows, eCommerce is revolutionary in so many ways. You can read thousands of user reviews before committing to a purchase and shop around hundreds of different sites to find the best price for your desired product. You can shop from the palm of your hand anywhere you have WiFi access or cell phone reception. You can avoid traffic and crowds, save money on gasoline, and find products from thousands of miles away that you would otherwise have no access to. With all these upsides, it’s no wonder eCommerce has become such a hit.
Jump on the eCommerce train
If you’re a business owner or have a particularly entrepreneurial spirit, eCommerce is the way to go. It’s totally fine to maintain a brick and mortar location, but it’s absolutely essential to pursue an eCommerce presence as well. E commerce is a trillion-dollar success story, and there’s no reason your business shouldn’t get in on the action. Set up your website, get your shopping cart platform up and running, and claim your piece of the eCommerce pie!
Rachel Woods writes on entertainment, technology and marketing from her hometown of Los Angeles, CA.