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Brazilian E-commerce Market 2016 Highlights

Published on 03/02/2017 - Updated on 07/17/2019

We have previously discussed some of the results for the Brazilian e-commerce market in 2016 and the forecasts and trends for this year. However, recently the 35th E-bit Webshoppers report has thrown some light on the subject releasing updated and more extensive data about the e-commerce market in Brazil. This study is the main reference for e-commerce professionals in Brazil since 2001. Relying on data from more than 25 million users of more than 21,000 online shops and a sophisticated system that collects data from buyers in real time, the results from E-bit tend to be the most insightful in the market.



YoY growth


The latest Webshoppers edition points to a year-on-year growth of 7.4% in 2016, with a total revenue of BRL 44.4 billion. The number does not fall far from the 8% previously estimated by E-bit. The report indicates that the main driver of this growth was the 8% increase on the average e-commerce transaction amount, as there was no growth in the total number of purchases made throughout the year. The average e-commerce transaction value for 2016 was BRL 417, in comparison to BRL 388 in 2015.



E-commerce consumers


Another highlight from the study is the fact that nearly a quarter of the Brazilian population has purchased online at least once in 2016, a total of 48 million consumers. This number represents an impressive growth of 22% in comparison to the previous year. The study points out that women were slightly more active than men for online purchases, representing 51.6% of the buyers. It is also worth noting that even though consumers from the South-East region of Brazil are still responsible for 60% of the online purchases in the country – down from 64.5% in 2015 -, other Brazilian regions saw a growth in the number of online transactions, with South and Center-West areas leading with a growth in share of 1.1% and 2.2% respectively.



Brazilians’ Shopping behavior


E-bit has identified that 2016 was an important year for m-commerce in Brazil, with nearly 22% of the purchases made via mobile devices. In 2015 m-commerce only represented 12% of the total e-commerce transactions in the country. The report also shows that Brazilian consumers were cautious about spending their money, behavior accentuated by the high unemployment rate and unstable economic situation. In view of that, dates like Black Friday, when buyers can save some money, were very popular. On the 25th of November, last year’s Black Friday, Brazilian consumers spent BRL 1.9 billion, which represents 13 times the revenue of a regular day.


Another highlight on the consumer’s behavior refers to the increase in the total number of buyers choosing one-off payments instead of paying in installments. Typically, Brazilians prefer to finance their purchases, but over 42% of the online consumers chose one-off payment. This is mostly justified by the incentives provided by online stores for one-off payments.



Cross-border purchases


Over 21 million Brazilian consumers spent USD 2.4 billion on international websites in 2016, an increase of 17% in comparison to 2015. Electronics, IT and Fashion were the top categories for cross-border purchases, with a 34%, 25% and 24% share respectively.


Regarding the payment methods used for purchases on international websites, credit card takes the lead with 62%, followed by PayPal (28%) and Boleto Bancário (9%). In this scenario, it is worth noting that many international websites do not provide local payment methods, which is why we see a bigger importance from PayPal in comparison to Boleto Bancário. When given the choice, Brazilians will choose to pay by boleto nearly 25% of the time.


It is also important to take into account that when using their credit cards or PayPal account to pay on international websites that do not provide local payment methods, Brazilian buyers will have to pay 6.38% IOF tax, in additional to up to 7% for exchange rate fees. This can hurt international merchants’ conversion rates. To help international merchants overcome these hurdles, PagBrasil offers a broad set of local payments methods and services aimed at boosting sales and improving conversions in the Brazilian e-commerce market.

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