Swiss eCommerce experienced record growth in 2017

Erik Sandkaulen

Data recently released by the Verband des Schweizerischen Versandhandel (VSV) reveals how the Swiss eCommerce market developed during 2017. It shows that the market grew by 10% and reached a volume of 7.4 billion Euros in terms of turnover, which is an increase of roughly 700 million euros.


Developments on the market

When it comes to categories, consumer electronics (CE) scores the highest with 1.74 billion euros in revenues generated. It is followed by fashion and shoes accounting for 1.44 billion euros turnover. With an anticipated increase in overall competition, VSV assumes that also pricing competition will increase. This tendency will require vendors to adapt their prices for comparable products. Further, retailers will need to strive for uniqueness on the market in order to stand out.

The data points out some major developments taking place in the market. First, shopping behavior continues to shift away from brick and mortar stores to online shops. 30% of all sales in consumer electronics (CE) are made online already. On average, Swiss customers order 14.2% of their purchases online and it is expected that this figure will reach 20% by 2020. Falling behind is the category food, its share of online sales only accounts for 2.3% of overall sales in food.


Cross-border sales grow disproportionately fast

A second big trend that can be seen is the increase of cross-border sales. Global players use their advantage in scale to outcompete domestic businesses in terms of pricing. Although the share of foreign resellers is low compared to other markets, the Swiss market had an increase of cross-border sales of 23%. Overall the volume of cross-border sales tripled since 2011. In 2017, it generated 1.22 billion euros in turnover and the trend is expected to continue. Astonishing is that this trend happens although Switzerland is not member of the European Union (EU) and thus buyers need to pay custom duties and VAT in addition to the initial market price.

The Swiss market is unique in many ways. Have you discovered its opportunities for your business yet?



Author unknown. “Ecommerce In Switzerland Was Worth €7.4 Billion In 2017”. Ecommerce News. Last modified 2018. Accessed April 11, 2018.

Kessler, Patrick, and Thomas Hochreutner. “Facts Zur Schweiz – VSV Versandhandel”. Vsv-Versandhandel.Ch. Last modified 2018. Accessed April 11, 2018.

Featured image: Ecommerce News, 2018


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