Saturday 18 November 2017

Irish small firms 'rule European eCommerce' with 75pc of Irish internet users shopping online

There has been a surge in online shopping here Photo: John Stillwell/PA Wire
There has been a surge in online shopping here Photo: John Stillwell/PA Wire
Adrian Weckler

Adrian Weckler

New EU figures show that Irish small businesses rule Europe when it comes to eCommerce and cross-border online trading.

The figures from the European Commission’s Digital Economy and Society Index (DESI) show that Ireland ranks first out of 28 countries in Europe when it comes to small firms selling online, turnover from eCommerce and cross-border ecommerce.

The figures also show that Ireland has the highest proportion of science, technology and engineering graduates in Europe per capita. However, the EU results also indicate that Ireland also has one of the worst rates of basic digital literacy among the rest of the population, with broadband availability and takeup still lagging the European average.

Read more: Retail Ireland warns of 'increasingly uncertain times' as monthly retail sales jump over 2pc

Despite Ireland’s relatively poor broadband access, there has been a surge in online shopping here, with almost three quarters of Irish internet users now shopping online, a jump from 63pc in 2015.

Irish companies are also among the top users of social media to achieve business ends, the DESI figures show. However, in a sign that print and broadcast channels are still strong in Ireland, we are the least likely among European consumers to read our news online with just 49pc of Irish internet users using the web as their primary source.

Ireland is also one of the top countries in Europe in the adoption of egovernment channels, with the government here pushing citizens more and more into online portals to file documents.

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