The State of Swiss Ecommerce 2021


The Ecommerce industry has been steadily accelerating for years, and 2020 kicked things into overdrive. Despite an overall slowing of economic activity, COVID-19 has led to a surge in Ecommerce and accelerated digital transformation. As the pandemic prompted lockdowns, businesses and consumers increasingly went digital, providing and purchasing more goods and services online. More than ever, merchants are focused on building and improving their Ecommerce businesses to meet customers’ growing expectations.

In fact, Ecommerce’s share of global retail trade increased from 14% in 2019 to about 17% in 2020. And the momentum is set to keep rolling! Let’s take a look at a few of the current trends shaping the future of Ecommerce and how they are being reflected in the state of Ecommerce in Switzerland.


Significant changes and trends shaping the Swiss Ecommerce landscape

The vast expansion of tools like artificial intelligence (AI) and augmented reality (AR) has proven a real game-changer for Ecommerce. With this type of technology, shoppers can genuinely see the items they are interested in and are much better positioned to make a buying decision. As a result, the shopping experience in specific industries, especially fashion and home decor, has changed dramatically as the customer can get a better feel for the item without visiting a physical store.

A growing volume of voice search is also boosting Ecommerce sales. As more and more families adopt smart speakers, the uptick will undoubtedly be reflected in a behavior change. We can expect to see more consumers using voice search to shop online and order food—creating a major opportunity for Ecommerce businesses in terms of keywords and content.

In addition, mobile shopping continues to grow. With more ways to pay than ever before, the success of subscription-based models, and businesses investing in optimizing their digital strategy for conversion—the industry is set to keep expanding – and this is only to name a few of the trends that are shaping the retail landscape.


Ecommerce in Switzerland

It is safe to say that Swiss Ecommerce is booming, and it achieved significant growth last year—around three times higher than the years prior. The value of goods ordered online and through distance selling increased by 25.8% to 13.3 billion Swiss francs, corresponding to 12.18 billion euros.  From top online shops like,, to and—there are plenty of strong forces leading growth and innovation.


Swiss Ecommerce customers

As reported by Ecommerce news, Switzerland has high Internet penetration, with 95% of the population between 16 and 65 regularly using the internet, and 90% of them having shopped online at least once. A study by Netcomm Suisse in 2016 illustrated that, in Europe, the Swiss are second only to the UK for the amount they spend online each year. The most popular product categories are clothes, transport, books, tickets, and holidays.

The future of the Ecommerce market in Switzerland

In Switzerland, approximately 40% of the Ecommerce market consists of the online sale of products, while the other 60% is based on services. The top 10 popular online stores in Switzerland, according to Y&R Group Switzerland: Ebookers, Nespresso, Digitec, Ex Libris, iTunes, Amazon, Ticketcorner, Zalando, SBB, Ricardo.

Switzerland also falls into the top three for cross-border purchases in Europe, with 61 percent of online purchases being dedicated to cross-border purchases. A study from 2021 shows that the value of goods sold online in 2020 was worth 12.2 billion euros.

In another powerful sign of growth, in 2021, Switzerland ranked first in the annual Ecommerce index of UNCTAD, which grades countries on their readiness to engage in Ecommerce. So when it comes to regions prepared to embrace the Ecommerce market as it continues to flourish, Switzerland is at the top of the list.

It goes to show that the opportunity to ride this digital trend is greater than ever and that it is critical to understand your customers and the forces at play in what’s becoming an increasingly competitive, albeit lucrative market. Having a grip on the technological foundations that drive consumer behavior, but also of your own product-market fit, is key to driving a successful Ecommerce strategy. What we’re finding is that as online penetration deepens, so does the complexity in which the market and players operate, and subsequently setting up your digital business requires more long-term planning, specialization, and attention than before.

Get in touch to speak with one of our experts about how you can effectively boost your Ecommerce strategy and outperform your competition.