Czech Republic takes top spot in Europe in internet sales

Photo: Bin im Garten, Wikimedia CC BY-SA 3.0

Czech Republic has taken a top spot in Europe in terms of internet sales, according to data released by the research agency GfK and the Czech Confederation of Commerce and Tourism on Tuesday. More than 43 percent of technical or non-food goods in the country are currently sold online, according to the study.

Photo: Bin im Garten,  Wikimedia CC BY-SA 3.0
The Czech Republic is followed by the Netherlands with 35 percent, Slovakia with 34 percent and the Great Britain with 33 percent. The average for the European Union stands at 24 percent.

Most products sold online fall into the IT category (36.5 percent), followed by cameras with 32.4 percent. The biggest year-on-year growth was rec-orded in the categories of small home appliances (24.5 percent) and con-sumer electronics (21.6 percent). The overall sales of technical products in the Czech Republic increased last year by 5.8 percent to 79 billion crowns.

Unlike other Europeans, Czechs still prefer cash on delivery payments to bank transfers. According to the study, more than one third of Czechs last year paid for their online sales upon delivery and 28 percent paid while picking up their order in a brick-and-mortar shop. Some 16 percent of cus-tomers paid by card and only nine percent used a bank transfer.

The Czech Republic currently boasts the highest number of e-shops per person in Europe. In 2017, the number of Czech e-shops increased by 3,900 on the previous year to reach 40,100. According to experts, their number is expected to grow even further within the next few years.

The share of Czech Internet stores in retail sales exceeded ten percent for the first time last year. E-shops revenues grew in 2017 by 18 percent to 115 billion crowns, according to the data provided by the Association of Electronic Commerce and price search engine Heuréka.

On the other hand, Czechs have started to limit their discount purchases over the past two years. After a long-term growth, the share of spending on food and drugstore in discount events dropped to 46 percent last year from 46.9 in 2015.