The global e-commerce market has been forecast to see sales pass the 1 trillion euro ($1.25 trillion) mark by the end of 2013, as the total number of Internet users increases to approximately 3.5 billion from nearly 2.2 billion at the end of 2011.
The e-commerce market has recently been invigorated by the growing use of smart phones leading to a fast growth in mobile commerce. E-Commerce and m-commerce have become very important areas of focus for mobile operators, IT, Internet media players, financial institutions, retail, and payment processing firms alike.
The United States remains the world's single biggest e-commerce market, followed by the United Kingdom and Japan. Growth rates in these countries will be approximately 10-15% a year. But with China's e-commerce sales growing more than 130% in 2011, it is only a matter of time before the Asian giant becomes the single largest market in the world.
In terms of regions, Europe is currently the largest e-commerce market in the world, with sales posting19% growth in 2011 to reach an estimated $307 billion, surpassing North America at $297 billion.
While some observers warn against the dominance of successful international companies such as Google, Apple, Facebook, eBay, Twitter, Skype, PayPal etc; the reality is that they are showing the potential opportunities for e-commerce and m-commerce - rather than preventing others from operating in these markets.
Companies should become far more active in the e-commerce market themselves in order to profit from the enormous business opportunities that are becoming available.
The future of e-retail is global and with the inevitable slowing of growth in several major markets in the likes of North America and Europe, it is important for businesses to understand where the future opportunities will be. Online is now becoming an integral part of any country's economy and should be considered so.
For more information on the global e-commerce market, see the latest research: Global E-Commerce Market
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