2017 Q4: The end of the year broke previous records

2017 Q4: The end of the year broke previous records

According to our e-commerce index the web shops broke all the previous records during the end of the year in Finland. The amount of orders increased by 8,2% during the last quarter of 2017 compared to the previous record from Q4/2016. The sales increased by 9,4% during the same period. Overall the e-commerce index increased by 8,7% and ended on an all time high 2787 points. One year ago the increase was 18,2% compared to Q4/2015 so the growth rate was slightly more modest between the last quarters of 2016 and 2017. The growth for the whole of 2017 was 10% compared to 2016.

According to Posti's announcement the record breaking online shopping during the Christmas period increased the number of parcels delivered by Posti throughout Finland to over 37 million packages during 2017. The parcel volume increased by 9% compared to the previous year. Looking at these statistics from Posti we can conclude that the Finnish e-commerce has managed surprisingly well against the pressure from the big foregin web shops. "We have worryingly followed the entry of the Chinese web shops in Finland, but now in the light of the statistics from Posti it seems the Finnish e-commerce has followed the growth rate really well since the statistics from Posti also includes the increased volumes of parcels from foreign web shops", says Vilkas' CEO Markku Korkiakoski.

If we look at the e-commerce index for only December the amount of orders increased by 9,2% compared to December in 2016. But interestingly the sales in euros for December only increased by 3%. What could be the reason for this low increase in sales? "The e-retailers have been forced to respond to the aggressive pricing from foreign competitors by lowering their own prices during campaigns such as Black Friday etc. The end customers are sensitive to prices and usually buy from the cheapest place they can find, so the Finnish retailers have had to start selling with a smaller margin. But in the light of this favorable trend of order volumes it seems this counterattack by Finnish e-commerce has been successful and the growth of order volumes has stayed in the same rate as for foreign operators." Korkiakoski speculates. "This competition has been quite costly for Finnish e-commerce, so it is a good reason for e-retailers to start looking even more carefully at their spendings. Expenses can be reduced for example by automating processes and choosing the most competitive suppliers." Korkiakoski continues.

The upswing in growth continues in 2018 and an interesting year is to be expected. Will this positive attitude from the SMEs also transfer to the consumers in the future and will it encurage a more courageous consumption? This will be followed closely via the e-commerce index during 2018.

Report archive

Vilkas' e-commerce index

Vilkas' e-commerce index

Vilkas Group's e-commerce index is calculated 4 times a year. Our index is based on the amount of orders, the total sales in euros and the average order value.

Average order value

The average order value in euros. Other currencies have been converted into euros.

Order index

The order index shows how the amount of orders in the shops have evolved since 2006.

Sales index

The sales index shows how much the sales value (in euros) has increased in the shops since 2006. Other currencies have been converted into euros.

The shop product categories

Vilkas Group's e-commerce platform is an industry-independent platform used by 1600 companies in different sizes. The webshops that our e-commerce index is based on come from a wide range of industries and companies of all sizes. About 10% are B2B webshops and the rest, around 90% are B2C webshops.

What is Vilkas' e-commerce index?

Vilkas Group publishes their e-commerce index quarterly, which gives a good picture of the e-commerce development in the Nordics. The data behind the e-commerce index is collected from Vilkas Group's customers' web shops since the beginning of 2006. Our e-commerce index also gives an idea of the online shopping behavior based on hundreds of thousands of end-customers' transactions each quarter.

Why e-commerce index?

Our e-commerce index is based on actual statistics from our webshops and gives a good picture of the development. Vilkas Group's most important goal is to help our e-retailers succeed and what is then a better guide line for all of us than our e-commerce index. By looking at Vilkas' e-commerce index you could also get an idea of the e-commerce business development as a whole in the Nordics.

Vilkas' e-commerce index scope and objectives

Our e-commerce index measures the success and activity of the webshops. Our index is based on actual numbers from Vilkas Group's customer base. It also gives a picture of the end customer's online behavior, based on actual numbers. We will continue to develop our index in order to provide e-retailers with a meaningful picture of e-commerce development also in the future.

How we calculate our e-commerce index

Vilkas' e-commerce index = [(0,8*Sales index) + (1,2*Order index) + (Average order value index)] / 3

The things concerned by Vilkas' e-commerce index are the change in sales (in euro), the change in the amount of orders and the average order value. For security reasons we don't collect data from individual shops for our index.

For more information about our e-commerce index, please contact us!

The material about Vilkas' e-commerce index shown on this page can be freely used as long as Vilkas Group's name is always mentioned as a source.

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