Ecommerce sales in B2C have soared to new heights in 2012. According to eMarketer.com, ecommerce sales topped $1 trillion for the first time. The B2C sales grew from 21.1% last year to $1 trillion.
This year, sales are expected to grow from 18.3% to $1.2 trillion worldwide. According to eMarketer, it is estimated that Asia-Pacific surpasses North America and become the No. 1 market for B2C ecommerce sales.
According to Manish Chowdhary, founder and CEO of Bridgeport-based multichannel ecommerce company GoECart, the obvious answer ecommerce sales have soared to new heights is convenience.
“Nobody wants to stand in line. It’s much more convenient you can get transactions quicker online than offline,” said Chowdhary. “It’s a matter of efficiency and [the] online channel provides un-parallel efficiency many times more efficient than any offline shopping.”
Chowdhary said people used to shop offline for the social aspect attached to shopping offline, whether it’s going to the mall with a friend or family member it was an experience.
“With the advent and finally attraction of social technologies online, people are able to create a similar bond online which is propelling similar growth on the online channel,” said Chowdhary. “Those characteristics are slowly being projected online. People are getting the social interactions online previously restricted to the offline. We are taking it to multiple angles.”
Chowdhary said gas prices, no sales tax and a huge assortment of any product directs more people to buy online. A very large selection for online shopping is click away. Finding a rare item offline would lead the consumer to travel a long distance and do a considerable amount of research.
“It is a pretty painful experience,” said Chowdhary.
According to Chowdhary, retailers focus on customer service. Most merchants will compete with one another by offering free returns and shipping.
“It’s taking away from the uncertainty of buying something online and not liking it,” said Chowdhary. “Retailers are taking away the risk and uncertainty involved with the customers not being satisfied with their purchase.”
The shift from spending in physical stores to retail and travel websites resulted in lower prices, greater convenience, broader selection and richer product information, according to eMarketer.
Ian MacDonald, Division Vice-President Ecommerce and Marketing at PartySuppliesDelivered.com, a division of US-Mattress.com, said it’s not surprising that the total worldwide is so large.
MacDonald said the number of ecommerce sales grown because there is simply more products to purchase online and there are more shoppers doing the purchasing.
“With more products as a society we just build more stuff every year. There is more opportunity to buy things. Some products just sell very well online and customers come to understand that,” said MacDonald. “Online retailers can have an infinite selection.”
MacDonald said population growth is one reason for the growth and the other is people are becoming more comfortable with buying with the concept of online.
People have become more comfortable with buying mattresses online, MacDonald added.
According to eMarketer, despite North America’s strong growth, its share of global sales will drop from 33.5 % last year to 31.5 % in 2013 as Asia-Pacific surges ahead.
There are several factors for the rapid growth in Asia-Pacific sales. Three Asia-Pacific markets including China, India, and Indonesia will see a faster B2C ecommerce sales growth than other markets worldwide this year, according to eMarketer. Japan continues to take a larger share of the global sales.
The U.S. will continue to remain the single country with the largest share of worldwide B2C ecommerce spending, at 26.3% this year. It is down from 31.5% in 2012, despite the relatively strong growth, according to eMarketer.
In 2016, China will have 22.6 % of the worldwide market and the U.S. will have 26.5 % of the worldwide market according to eMarketer.
Asia-Pacific B2C ecommerce sales has grown more than 33% to $332.46 billion last year. This year will see sales increase by more than 30% to over $433 billion – or more than one-third of all global B2C ecommerce sales, according to eMarketer.
In the United States, B2C sales will grow 12% to $384.80 billion this year – after growing 13.8% to $343.43 billion in 2012 – as the average B2C ecommerce sales per user reach $2,466 in 2013 among those who buy items online in the U.S., according to eMarketer.
This year, according to eMarketer’s estimations, the average spending in China is set to reach $670. China is planned to nearly double the number of people who buy goods online between 2012 and 2016, according to eMarketer. This results in an upside for B2C ecommerce sales in China through the forecast period.