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Ecommerce Hangover: ecommerce growth is slowing down. What’s going on?

We are currently in a unique historical phase, which can be described as an Ecommerce Hangover. After experiencing a period of rapid growth and acceleration during and immediately after the pandemic, the growth of ecommerce in recent months has become more moderate, almost returning to a normal state compared to the past. This trend is observed not only in Italy but also in Europe and the United States.

In this context, by analyzing a sample of internal data and other official sources, we conducted a study to understand the extent of this phenomenon and identify some solutions to reverse this trend. 

Our research, updated with data for Q2 and Q3 2023, highlights that:

  • Growth rates of ecommerce in Europe are normalizing: in Q3 2023, for the first time, there is a decrease of -8% from the previous year, since the same quarter in 2022 averaged an over-the-top performance, with 32% growth.
  • The same slowdown was seen in Q2 in the United States (+7.5%), confirming an ecommerce growth rate close to that of Q1 (+8%)
  • In Italy, online sales are stabilizing as well. The total number of online buyers has remained relatively unchanged in recent years compared to 2021, while the number of online purchases has experienced a decline in the early months of 2023. This reversal of the trend is likely due to inflation and a shift back to offline purchases (Netcomm NetRetail 2023). 
  • People are returning to shopping in physical stores. In the USA, 40% of spending by Generation Z and Millennials is allocated to physical stores (Forbes), while in Europe, Eurostat predicts by the end of this quarter that year-on-year retail sales should grow by +2.80%.
  • For the following years, overall growth of the ecommerce channel is still expected, but growth rates will be much lower than in previous years (between 7.5% and 9.5%).

Within this report, you will find:

  • Updated data and insights on the Ecommerce Hangover phenomenon and the back to offline Retail.
  • Insights on how omnichannel is a key success factor for brands.
  • Some forecasts for 2024 and beyond
  • Tips for dealing with the future scenario in the ecommerce channel.


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