EU webshop sales nearly 20 percent up in the Netherlands

© Hollandse Hoogte
In Q3 2019, Dutch consumers purchased 455 million euros worth of products from foreign EU webshops. This represents an increase of nearly 20 percent relative to Q3 2018, when consumers spent 380 million euros. Statistics Netherlands (CBS) reports this on the basis of ongoing research.

In Q2 2019, turnover generated by EU webshops reached a record level of half a billion euros. This turnover represents all online purchases by Dutch consumers from companies located within the European Union but outside the Netherlands. Figures are exclusive of VAT and have been calculated on the basis of an experimental method. As this method is still under development, the figures are provisional.

EU webshop sales have soared over the past five years. In Q3 2019, turnover was up by 170 percent relative to Q3 2014. The largest turnover increase was achieved in Q4 2016 (+34.5 percent) while the smallest was realised in Q1 2018 (+11.0 percent).

Turnover from online sales by EU webshops in the Netherlands (provisional figures) (year-on-year % change)
JaarKwartaalTurnover
2015Q133.1
Q232.1
Q325.0
Q424.2
2016Q116.8
Q229.1
Q320.5
Q434.5
2017Q130.6
Q219.5
Q325.0
Q413.0
2018Q111.0
Q216.3
Q320.1
Q424.4
2019Q117.3
Q219.4
Q319.6

Online sales by Dutch retailers 17.5 percent up

In Q3 2019, retailers registered in the Netherlands saw internet sales go up by 17.5 percent relative to the same quarter one year previously. In terms of Dutch internet sales, a distinction can be made between online shops and the ‘multichannelers’: companies with online sales in addition to their brick-and-mortar shop(s). In Q3 2019, online shops saw their turnover go up by nearly 15 percent relative to one year previously. Online turnover realised by Dutch multichannelers was up by nearly 22 percent. Total retail turnover in the Netherlands in Q3 was 3.7 percent higher year-on-year.

Online sales by retailers (excl. petrol stations and pharmacies) (year-on-year % change)
JaarKwartaalRetailersMultichannelers (online sales not as core activity)Mail-order companies, webshops
2015Q117.822.914.8
Q219.520.618.8
Q324.923.026.0
Q425.121.527.4
2016Q124.016.728.6
Q221.216.923.9
Q316.011.118.9
Q419.820.319.5
2017Q116.117.515.3
Q220.625.617.7
Q321.124.219.5
Q421.321.621.1
2018Q121.125.618.4
Q218.025.413.4
Q317.728.711.7
Q415.625.89.6
2019*Q116.623.612.2
Q218.223.214.7
Q317.521.714.9
*provisional figures

Turnover share of European webshops limited

Purchases made by Dutch people from European webshops account for a relatively small part of consumer spending; in 2018, these accounted for less than 2 percent of 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.