Trends in Online Global Shopping

Internet access by consumers has changed the shopping landscape. The internet has transformed many aspects of a consumer’s life, but perhaps shopping for goods and services is what has been revolutionized the most. While it is still a great idea to stop by a store and purchase products, the ease and convenience of online shopping can’t be disregarded.

Online Shopping Trends by Region

Consumers around the world engage in online shopping, but there is a variation when it comes to what products they are purchasing and what factors influence their decisions when making an online purchase. Here are the shopping trends per region according to a study of Nielsen.

North America

About half of online Americans favor websites that sell products online only while most Canadian online shoppers are split between choosing online-only stores and traditional physical stores.

Americans and Canadian online shoppers are almost identical when it comes to products and services they are availing online. Books, clothing, and airline tickets are what they usually purchase online.

When it comes to factors affecting the decisions of North Americans when making online shopping, product reviews come useful. Online reviews are most important to them when they buy consumer electronics, cars, and software.

Latin America

Brazilians are the most prolific online shoppers in this region. The leading products that they purchase online include books, electronic equipment, computer hardware and DVDs/games.

Venezuelans, on the other hand, love to purchase products like electronic equipment, airline tickets, and computer hardware. Books are not a popular product for an online purchase for Venezuelans.

Mexicans, meanwhile, spend money on books, electronic equipment, tour/hotel reservations, event tickets and music, computer hardware, and video/DVDs/games.

Online reviews are useful for Latin American consumers while researching purchases of consumer electronics, software, and cars.

Africa and the Middle East

Online shopping is not popular in the Middle East, Africa, and Pakistan. Online shoppers in this region usually purchase books, airline tickets/reservations, and electronic equipment.

Social media has less influence on purchasing online. Saudis are the only ones most likely to use social media to make buying decisions. Online reviews and opinions are important to online consumers when purchasing and researching cars, software, and consumer electronics.

Asia Pacific

The Chinese and Koreans are the most prolific online shoppers in this region. Koreans usually purchase books, cosmetics, clothing/accessories/shoes, and groceries. Chinese, on the other hand, favor books, clothes, and electronics when making an online purchase. A global survey, however, found out that Australians are the developed world’s most frequent online shoppers at international retailers.


Online purchase in Europe is high. Notably, online consumers in Norway and Great Britain spend the most money. Books are popular among Austrians, while Germans and Czechs favor clothing and shoes. Online shopping is not popular in Estonia, Croatia, and Latvia.


Shopping online is exploding in many regions around the world. Many bricks and mortar shop have already invested in online portals in order to be competitive in a fast-changing shopping landscape. Internet retailers are reinventing things to make online shopping easy and convenient for all consumers in the future.

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