It is expected that B2C online sales in Belgium will pass the border of 10 billion euros for the first time in 2017. According to the latest BeCommerce Markt Monitor figures, the online spending in the first 6 months of 2017 increased by 10% to 4.9 billion euros. The number of Belgians that shop online now is 7.9 billion. As much as 9 percent of all product revenues nowadays is through e-commerce.

In the BeCommerce Markt Monitor, the total Belgian consumer market is mapped per quarter. The report is based on a combination of different data sources and includes all personal and household consumer purchases, excluding those for online gaming and online gambling. Items that have been returned, thus that are eventually not purchased, are also excluded from the report. On average, Belgians spent 348 euros online during the second quarter. The average online purchase totalled to 118 euros.

Most of the product purchases will take place via e-commerce

The Dutch Thuiswinkel Markt Monitor is also published four times a year and gives insight into the Dutch B2C e-commerce market.

In the Netherlands, online spending in the first six months of 2017 increased by 13% to 10.66 billion euros, and the total amount of online purchases for 2017 is expected to exceed the 20 billion cap. Out of the 10.66 billion euros online consumer spending, 5.89 billion euros was spent on the purchase of products, such as electronics, clothing and toys. These expenditures increased by 16% compared with the same period last year. The product categories Toys and Health & Beauty show the largest growth in online spending for the first half of 2017.

Traditionally, the Netherlands is behind the United States for its e-commerce maturity - and Belgium is behind the Netherlands. In the more mature markets, most purchases already have an online component. Many products may be purchased in the physical store, but the orientation phase will be done online. It is expected that most products will be purchased through e-commerce in the future.

Mobile first

Both in Belgium and the Netherlands, most of the online purchases are still done using a laptop, followed by a desktop. Both, however, are decreasing in popularity. In the second quarter of 2017, 6 per cent of all online purchases in Belgium was done using a smartphone. In the Netherlands, that totalled to 7 percent.

Thuiswinkel Marktmonitor Nederland H1 2017