EU webshops earn over €400 million in the Netherlands

© Hollandse Hoogte / Jordi Huisman
In Q3 2018, Dutch consumers purchased approximately 406 million euros (excl. VAT) worth of products from foreign EU webshops. This represents a 14-percent increase relative to Q3 2017. Online sales by Dutch retailers were nearly 18 percent up in this period. Statistics Netherlands (CBS) reports this on the basis of ongoing research.

In the first three quarters of 2018, sales to Dutch consumers generated by EU webshops amounted to a total of 1,253 million euros . This is almost 16 percent up year-on-year. In 2014, sales by EU webshops to Dutch consumers over the first three quarters totalled up to 555 million euros.


Sharper growth in domestic online sales

Webshops registered in the Netherlands saw sales in the first three quarters of 2018 increase by nearly 19 percent year-on-year. Turnover generated by Dutch shops selling online only grew by over 14 percent in the same three quarters. For Dutch retail companies selling online as well as in traditional brick-and-mortar shops, online turnover grew by 26 percent. Total turnover in the Dutch retail sector was over 3 percent up in this period in 2018.

Turnover from online sales
YearQuarterDutch webshop sales (year-on-year % change)EU webshop sales to Dutch consumers (year-on-year % change)

Turnover share of European webshops small

Dutch consumer purchases from European webshops account for a relatively small part total consumer spending. In 2017, these purchases represented a share of less than 2 percent in the total retail turnover generated in the Netherlands. The distinction between domestic and foreign webshops tends to be blurry to Dutch consumers. Content on e-commerce websites is often available in multiple languages and foreign online stores may have a Dutch version.

Explanation of method

Turnover of EU webshops concerns the online sale of goods by companies registered in the EU, but not in the Netherlands. Figures have been calculated using a method which is still under development and are therefore provisional. The margin of error in relation to total turnover amounts to approximately 5 percent.