Adding to cart: The French e-commerce explosion

France is ranked as the fifth-biggest e-commerce market in the world as digital-savvy French shoppers head to the virtual checkouts.  

E-commerce in France is enjoying steady growth, with figures from FEVAD, the Fédération E-commerce et Vente À Distance, the national French e-commerce system, revealing French consumers spent €72 billion online in 2016, a year-on-year increase of 14.6%.

FEVAD also found that there were over one billion e-commerce purchases in 2016, the equivalent of 33 transactions per second.

The latest data predicts that 2017 will top previous records, with the first quarter already totalling €20 billion. Experts estimate that online retail sales will reach at least €80 billion this year as e-commerce functionality and technology evolves at a rapid pace.


Currently, there are 206,800 active e-commerce sites, serving 36.6 million cybershoppers. French consumers also proved that they are open to testing new e-commerce functions, with sales via web-based marketplaces rising 18% and mobile purchases increasing by 30% YOY.

However, the influx of e-commerce sites now means merchants need to employ a competitive pricing strategy, the most popular being free shipping and flash promotions. For the sixth consecutive year, the average basket value fell, coming in at €68. Nonetheless, while the value of individual e-commerce purchases was 7% lower, the rate of purchases continued to increase, with an average of 28 online transactions per buyer per year in 2016.

According to the FEVAD report, more than 40% of French people log on every day to one of the top seven online vendors: Amazon, eBay, CDiscount, Vente-Privee, Ali Express, FNAC and A staggering 4 million French consumers visit Amazon, the number one e-commerce site, every single day.


Despite the recession that has plagued European merchants in recent years, the future for France’s e-commerce looks bright. Paris Retail Week, from 19–21 September, will further explore the future trends in the industry, as well as showcasing innovative payment solutions and new digital technologies. 

Drop by booth H030 to discover the future of ecommerce