E-commerce in June and July reveals decline and recovery cycle patterns

We have added new research data for the end of July. Our research now contains responses from more than 31.600 consumers in The Netherlands, Germany and Norway over a period of over four months.

Overall, the long-term e-commerce development trends show some distinct phases that are very similar across all three countries. After an initial boom in online purchases during March/April, growth across all three countries reached a plateau in May.

Following this we then see two consecutive cycles of decline and recovery patterns. The first takes place in June and the second one in July: in the start of both June and July the number of online purchases decline, with purchases picking up towards the end of both months. Can this cycle-like pattern solely be explained by salary payments, and/or are there other forces - related to the pandemic - at play here?

From a more overarching perspective, we need to keep in mind that changes in e-commerce behavior can be attributed to the fact that consumers are in a holiday-mode in August. As we approach the end of the European summer holidays, consumers will likely switch to a more structured work-life mode, and can align their purchasing behavior as a result. At the same time, revivals of the corona virus and subsequent (local) measures may also impact consumer behavior.

Fashion is the locomotive driving online purchase growth

However, we see different patterns across The Netherlands, Germany and Norway. The share of online shoppers that purchase Fashion online has increased steadily across all three countries. But another growth lever is the number of online Fashion purchases done by online Fashion shoppers – and here we see an increase in The Netherlands, while German online Fashion shoppers continue to purchase at the same level.

What is next?

Stay tuned for upcoming blog posts in which we well deep dive into above subjects, and more.