South Koreans are biggest online spenders for FMCG

Four of the top 10 markets are in Asia, according to Kantar Worldpanel, which also revealed some interesting buyer behaviour.

Source: Kantar Worldpanel
Source: Kantar Worldpanel
ASIA-PACIFIC - Grocery sales via ecommerce platforms grew 15 percent to $48 billion in the 12 months ended June 2016, according to Kantar Worldpanel.
The company's Future of E-commerce in FMCG study shows that ecommerce now accounts for 4.4 percent of all FMCG sales, although the FMCG market experienced a rather flat growth at just 1.6 percent during the same period.
South Korea took the biggest share of the world's online FMCG market at 16.6 percent, followed by Japan (7.2 percent) and United Kingdom (6.9 percent). In terms of sales growth, China was the leader at 47 percent; ecommerce now makes up 4.2 percent of FMCG sales in China, and beauty products account for 50 percent of that. In comparison, only 1.4 percent of groceries were bought online in the United States.
Rank Country E-commerce share of market 2016 (value)
1 South Korea 16.60%
2 Japan 7.20%
3 UK 6.90%
4 France 5.30%
5 Taiwan 5.20%
6 China 4.20%
7 Czech Republic 2.10%
8 Spain 1.70%
9 The Netherlands 1.70%
10 US 1.40%
The data also show that shoppers who began shopping online were more likely to continue doing so, and that 55 percent of online shoppers retained the same shopping list from one purchase to the next.

Another interesting takeaway from the study is that shoppers usually spend more per trip online than they do offline—shoppers in the UK spent an average of $59 online compared to $19 in bricks-and-mortar stores. However, shoppers in France, UK and China reined in their shopping one year after starting to shop online. Kantar Worldpanel suggested that brands should work on driving impulse purchase online by making suggestions for complementary products.

“Although online sales have the potential to cannibalise in-store sales, it is vital that retailers act quickly to develop a strong ecommerce presence," said Stéphane Roger, global shopper and retail director at Kantar Worldpanel. "The retailer that goes online first in each market can enjoy a far higher market share—this can be a difference of at least 40 percent in France and up to three times more in the UK."

Roger added that new entrants such as Amazon would shake up the industry, with grocery ecommerce set to grow to 9 percent of the market and be worth $150 billion by 2025.

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