The Association of Companies in Internet Trade (AKIT) summarized the results [in Russian] of the year 2014 in Russian e-commerce. Turnover of the Russian e-commerce market reached 713 billion Russian rubles (14 billion USD), which is a 31% increase YoY.
Internet penetration in Russia in 2014
AKIT report states that the key drivers for the market growth were increase of Internet usage in the regions and development of the mobile Internet.
By the end of 2014 there were 73 million Internet users in Russia, of which 40 million made at least one purchases over the Internet. The share of the Central district (incl. Moscow and St. Petersburg) in terms of amount of Internet users is still the largest (about 20.9 million people). The fastest growing regions in Russian e-commerce in 2014 were Siberia ( 130% increase) and Far East (92% increase). Smaller cities and villages still have relatively low Internet penetration, which according to AKIT is good news, as it means that there is a lot of untapped potential in the Russian e-commerce market.
Cross-border e-commerce in Russia in 2014
According to AKIT, the share of cross-border trade in Russian e-commerce reached 30%, which means that Russian consumers made 80 million purchases and spent around 6 billion Russian rubles (108 million Euro) abroad.
This allowed Russian Post to significantly increase its share among the other methods of delivery (39% in 2014 comparing to 33% in 2013).
Chinese retailer Aliexpress showed the most significant growth in Russian cross-border e-commerce sector – the amount of Russian visitors doubled during 2014 and reached 15.6 million people per month. Amazon and eBay are also very popular among Russian Internet shoppers and their sales in Russia kept increasing, even despite unstable currency exchange rate and generally volatile economic situation in the end of the year.
The cash on delivery dominance that I described in one of my posts back in 2013 is still very much the case, however people are getting more and more comfortable paying online with a credit card. Credit card in the payment method that has been showing steady increase each year. The share of cash payments is decreasing, although from very high levels.
Top verticals in Russian e-commerce
Electronics & Home Appliances kept the leading position in Russian e-commerce. The segment yet again showed a healthy growth of 41.6% compared to 2013. The highest increase was seen in the following categories: phones and smartphones (63%), consumer electronics (63,4%) and major appliances (55,8%).
Electronics stores are also the largest part of Russia’s top 10 online retailers:
- Ozon (multi-segment)
- Ulmart (multi-segment)
- M. Video (electronics)
- Wildberries (apparel)
- Svyaznoy (electronics)
- Eldorado (electronics)
- Citylink (electronics)
- DNS (electronics)
- Lamoda (apparel)
- Enter (multi-segment)
The end of 2014 and beginning of 2015 have been difficult times for the Russian economy. Multiple big brands pulled out of country, other see the crisis as a good opportunity to strengthen their positions and gain market shares. Despite all, Russia is the biggest online market in Europe with a lot of untapped potential, and the situation is stabilizing. We at RST Digital strongly believe that 2015 will be yet another year of growth in Russian online business. What do you guys think?