Last year, 7.5 million Dutch people in the age category 16–74 bought one or more articles online. Together with Denmark and the United Kingdom (UK), the Netherlands tops the EU list. The proportion of Dutch e-shoppers has grown from 36 to 56 percent over the past half decade. Holiday trips and books are popular items to buy over the Internet.
Online shopping (Internet users aged 16-74) in the EU, 2008 1)
Sharp increase in UK and the Netherlands
E-shopping in the Netherlands increased by 20 percentage points over the period 2004-2008. A similar increase was recorded in the UK, making the Netherlands, the UK and Denmark the EU countries where online shopping is most widely accepted.
The two new EU member states (Romania and Bulgaria) and Estonia have the lowest increase. After a surge between 2004 and 2006, the increase has slowed down in nearly all EU member states since 2007.
Increase in online shopping in the EU, 2004-2008 1)
Most Dutch e-shoppers are frequent buyers
Among people engaged in online shopping, frequent e-shoppers constitute the majority. Their number is twice as high as the number of infrequent Internet buyers. Higher educated 25 to 44-year-old males are regular online buyers, as opposed to lower educated 65 to 74-year-old females.
Mainly trips, holidays, clothes and tickets
Most online purchases concern trips, holidays, books, clothes and event tickets. The gender difference with respect to the articles bought over the Internet is minimal, though women show a tendency to buy clothes and sports equipment, whereas men seem to prefer electronic equipment and software. Gambling by computer is the least popular activity for both genders.
Online shopping by type of purchases, 2008
93 percent of Dutch e-shoppers active within the Netherlands
Over 93 percent of e-shoppers tend to buy their articles and services from individuals and companies within the Netherlands. Approximately 17 percent also buy beyond the Netherlands in other European countries and nearly 10 percent buy goods or services online outside Europe.