Swiss online business 2019



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Mail order business Swiss online business 2019

Published on 05.05.2020 by Andreas Wüthrich, Head of Digital Commerce Consulting, Post CH Ltd

In cooperation with the Association of Swiss Mail Order Businesses (VSV) and GfK, Swiss Post has examined the development of the mail order business. The figures are very clear. Consumers are increasingly shopping online, with Swiss online trading continuing to gain in importance.

Unsurprisingly, the trend towards online consumption continued in 2019. During the past year, the Swiss population purchased goods totalling CHF 10.3 billion online. This represents a year-on-year increase of around 8.4 percent.

Swiss online trade continues to gain in importance

The figures nevertheless reveal a major surprise. For the first time in many years, online retailers, marketplaces and platforms from Switzerland (with a “.ch domain”) displayed stronger growth than their foreign counterparts. It should be noted that companies such as Zalando and ABOUT YOU are also included in these figures, although they do not have a registered office in Switzerland.

Swiss consumers purchased goods worth CHF 8.3 billion from domestic providers. This year-on-year increase of 9.2 percent represents growth totalling CHF 700 million. Foreign platforms recorded trade worth CHF 2 billion, representing year-on-year growth of only 5.2 percent.

The total number of direct imports fell accordingly. In 2019, these fell by 4.6 percent. Nevertheless, some 31 million small goods consignments were sent to Switzerland, 21 million of which came from China.

What the Swiss buy most often online

The total online share of the Swiss retail sector accounted for 9.1 percent in 2019. A glance at the most popular categories shows that the home electronics segment is the clear leader, with Swiss consumers buying 36 percent of these goods online, representing total sales of CHF 2.6 billion. This is followed by the fashion/shoes segment, totalling CHF 2.15 billion. The food segment also grew considerably, exceeding 1 billion francs in sales for the first time in 2019. Above-average growth in the online share, which can serve as a benchmark for retailers in the segment, are shown by DIY/garden from 5 percent to 7 percent (+40 percent), home & living from 8 percent to 9 percent (+12.5 percent), and toys and sports both around +25 percent.

More details in optimum format

More details and figures can be found on a dedicated website. You can download the study here in PDF format free of charge.

Andreas Wüthrich, Head of Digital Commerce Consulting, Post CH Ltd

Andreas Wüthrich has been Head of Digital Commerce Consulting at Swiss Post’s Digital Commerce Competence Center since August 2018. For the previous 14 years, he was in charge of strategic development of digital projects, implementation and organizational structure at Dosenbach-Ochsner AG.

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