How to succeed in the Dutch and Belgian ecommerce market

The Netherlands and Belgium have a combined population of 28 million people, a gross domestic product of 1.08 trillion euros and English is spoken widely. The two countries offer an attractive market to international retailers looking to expand into new territories. A new guidebook helps companies who want to sell online in the Netherlands and Belgium.

Belgium grows faster than the Netherlands

In the Netherlands, 93 percent of the population shops online and the ecommerce market grew by 16.1 percent last year. In Belgium, 74 percent of its inhabitants shop online and it’s one of the fastest growing markets with a growth of 34.2 percent last year. Also in terms of cross-border ecommerce, Belgium is growing fast (35%) compared to the Netherlands (21%). Both Dutch and Belgian consumers love to shop abroad in countries such as the UK, France and Germany, although in the Netherlands consumers also shop abroad often in China and the US.

Ecommerce customers in the Netherlands

The most popular product categories in Dutch ecommerce are travel & tickets (38.96%), followed by telecommunication (12.82%), consumer electronica (7.84%), computer hardware and software (7.57%), clothing and shoes (7.48%) and media (6.36%).

More than 11 million Dutch have at least once bought something online. This is 92% of all active internet users in that country. In 2013 about 10.3 million Dutch people ordered something online, according to CBS. In total there were 46 million online orders placed, a growth of 10% compared to the same period one year ago. And in 2015 research showed there were 11.76 million people (aged 15 years or older) who shopped online during the first half of 2014.

Ecommerce customers in Belgium

Belgian customers primarily use cards and online bank payment methods to pay online. About 85% of online payments in Belgium get realized using online payment method Ogone. This payment provider gives customers to choose from different payment methods, including credit card payments and direct banking. PayPal is also being used. A study conducted in the second quarter of 2015 shows that the credit card was the most popular payment method during that period, used by 35 percent of online purchases. Bancontact/Mister Cash (30%) and PayPal (12%) ranked second and third.

Clothing and shoes are amongst the most popular products purchased online. About six in ten Belgians have bought online at least once, one in four Belgians order products online on a monthly basis. Almost half of Belgian consumers prefer ordering from a shop in the region or one they already know.

Source: Ecommerce news and Ecommerceworld wide