Our global e-commerce journey brings us to the Swedish e-commerce market. Before diving into the details of online retailing, let’s look at the country from a broader perspective.
Swedish economy and demographics
- Population: 10.32Mn
- GDP: $547.12Bn
- GDP/cap: $53,000
- Urbanization: 88%
- An open, diversified, and competitive economy
- Specialized in high-tech products
- Green economy
E-commerce in Sweden
After five years of rapid growth, the Swedish economy moderates slightly in 2019 (2.1% GDP growth). On the other hand, the e-commerce market grows rapidly, driven by the high volume of mobile commerce.
E-commerce market value is $13.2Bn, and online sales constitute 8.7% of total retail sales. The market is forecast to grow at an annual rate of 12%.
It has a 97% internet penetration rate at one hand, and on the other, social media penetration averages at 72%.
74% of the Swedish population use smartphones and another 51% state using smartphones or tablets to shop online. Not surprisingly, mobile shopping accounts for 41% of the total e-commerce.
Even before going to an offline store, half of the Swedish population look up the product via their mobile phones.
The main reason why Swedish consumers shop online is that online stores allow customers to determine the time and place of shopping. Saving time, extensive product range an convenience are the other determining factors.
Almost all of the citizens (99.7%) are registered in the banking system. Credit card penetration remains at 45% payment by card is the primary payment method (41.5%).
In line with efforts to switch to a cashless society, the Swedish government announced the introduction of the first state-backed cryptocurrency in 2019.
Trends in the local market
The largest segment of the market is Electronics & Media. Clothing, footwear, media, and building supplies follow. Grocery shopping, an online product category that grows explosively in many parts of the world, extends its market share in Sweden.
Digital wallet use increases in tandem with smartphone usage, at a pace that attracted Google to launch Google Pay in Sweden.
Advantages of the local market
A stable local economy, high level of GDP/capita, well-developed digital payment infrastructure, high internet penetration rate, and fast internet speed are the drivers of e-commerce growth.
Sweden ranks as the first country for internet access and inclusivity. Regardless of their age and gender, all Swedish citizens have access to the internet.
Logistics infrastructure contributed to the growth pace of e-commerce. The average delivery time shrunk from one week down to a few days (even hours in some cases) in 10 years.
Additionally, the country is ranked 12th in Rankings&Ease of Doing Business Score of World Bank.
Must-knows before entering the market
The primary demands of Swedish customers are clear delivery dates, optional delivery methods, and free delivery. 80% of online shoppers state the importance of being able to choose how the item will be delivered. Another 82% say they can wait for a few extra days if the delivery method is sustainable.
40% of consumers make a minimum of one purchase per month via smartphones.
In-app transactions account for 37.7% of all payments and apps also used for checking the delivery status. 71% of consumers check the status of their purchase at least once.
Final Thoughts on Sweden’s E-commerce Market
The Swedish market has its advantages: high per capita income, a stable economy, developed internet infrastructure, easy internet access, and advancing payment methods.
What you need to know about the e-commerce Sweden in sum:
- Mobile commerce constitute 41% of total e-commerce and businesses can thrive from providing a user-friendly mobile platform
- Swedish consumers demand control over delivery methods and clear delivery time.
- Online shoppers frequently use apps for two things: making payments and checking the delivery status
- There is a transformation toward a cashless society and digitalized payment methods are on demand