Growth of e-commerce in Serbia

Since the onset of the pandemic, the world has massively embarked on online shopping, and that trend has continued to this day. Furthermore, the number of online shoppers has been growing day on day. This was corroborated by the National Bank of Serbia in its e-commerce in Serbia report.

The traditional way of shopping where a shopper physically goes to the store, tries out what they are going to buy and drives there and back home is increasingly being replaced by shopping from home, or so-called online shopping. Due to greater opportunities offered by online shopping which did not exist before and to such an extent, consumers are now buying the desired products in droves by few clicks of a computer mouse or using their smartphones. Data show that in the last two years (2020/21), more than 30 million online transactions, paid by cards, took place. After a huge increase, recorded by the NBS, that number continues to grow. Also, an increasing number of vendors are opting for selling their products online.

The value of online shopping is astonishing. In 2020, it amounted to over 450 million euros, while in 2021, it recorded a huge growth and stood at 797 million euros.

The average value of one purchase last year was 48.22 euros, although the number of orders paid in dinars was higher than in other currencies.

The pandemic has changed a lot, including people’s habits, as well as boosted trust in online shopping, i.e. in safe transactions. In Serbia, shoppers usually shop online at domestic stores.

According to MasterIndex’s data, the highest number of online transactions is related to paying bills online. Buying clothes and shoes come in second place, followed by sporting goods, household items, electronic devices and books. Groceries occupy the 7th place. It is interesting to note that the last two places are infamously occupied by subscriptions and training courses& education.

Even when it comes to smaller businesses, a large number of them are moving their business online, as a result of digitalization, but also the needs of their customers. By switching to the digital option, they are boosting the competition in online business as well.

Data show that in the last two years (2020/21), more than 30 million online transactions, paid by cards, took place.

Consumer protection is one of the increasingly important segments of e-commerce, as are system solutions that will include the civil sector, consumer protection associations and companies and local governments. The Serbian Ministry of Trade is involved in this process, so last year, the Law on Consumer Protection was passed, which created the basis for further improvements in the functioning of the online business in Serbia.

E-commerce in Serbia is growing without a doubt and it is expected to become even better and safer.

Shopping online creates a completely new experience for consumers and provides an opportunity to quickly and easily have access to products and services, compare prices from various vendors, find discounts and save money and time. When online shoppers buy from legal online vendors registered in Serbia, they enjoy all the rights stemming from the laws of the Republic of Serbia.

People who use online shopping say that saving time is the main advantage of such a kind of shopping. They also mention a time-saving price comparison as another advantage, as well as home delivery and a wider selection of products and services.

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