Contact us

UK leads the world for ecommerce, but what’s going on in the rest of the world?3 min read

3 min read

Recent figures show that the UK is leading the way in ecommerce with the average person spending £1,083 per year online in 2011, an overall rise of 14% from 2010 and £463 more than average spend in the US. But what are the reasons for the UK’s advancement? And what’s going on in the rest of the world?

At Croud, a global business with an ever developing Cloud Network that expands across the seas to Europe, we are keen to keep updated on what’s going on outside the UK and what business opportunities there are.


Figures from the IMRG CapGemini e-Retail Sales Index, summarised in a report published by Ofcom in December, show how average consumer spending has increased globally between 2007-2011. No big surprise considering the mass development in search and more user friendly tech.

A recent Econsultancy article  suggests that the English language is advancing UK ecommerce, and looking at the top three contenders – UK, Ireland and Australia the results support their statement. The obvious benefits are technology from the US can easily be adopted and marketing processes and procedures do not need to be translated. Also English being the world’s most popular second language, shoppers looking to purchase from countries abroad are more likely to use websites that are in English if they cannot find one in their own language. Other factors for the UK’s lead include rise in debit cards and lower priced internet. However website standards are also something to be considered.

Email-Brokers released a current report which suggests that a lack of digital skills is also impeding European ecommerce, whittling it down to website, website standards and user experience. The report showed France, Germany and the Netherlands had the highest proportion of business online but even in these countries 40% of business was not online. In terms of ecommerce, the UK and Liechtenstein were the most advanced – defined as being able to process orders and payments. In the UK 16% can carry out these processes and 17% in Liechtenstein, compared with just 6% in Belgium and 9% in Austria, Germany and the Netherlands. Not only will a poor website experience affect conversions it will also affect SEO and natural search rankings.

However these statistics also tell us that there is a great market for digital skills and experience. The graph shows how all countries have experienced a progressive increase in online spending, something that is highly likely to continue especially as more businesses realise the potential in online marketing.

Croud’s European Account Director for Paid Search, Arie Westerduin, gives us his opinion on these results:

“Every year we see huge changes in the marketing landscape. Customers become more demanding and every year they want more things. You have to stay ahead of the competition and with average online spend continuously increasing, particularly in English speaking countries but also in Europe, expect ad ‘dollars’ to be increasingly spent on online marketing.”

If you are interested in our digital marketing expertise, in or outside the UK, get in contact with us via our contact page and don’t hesitate to send us any questions!