Amazon dominates UK ecommerce market

December 10, 2019

Amazon increased its ecommerce market share in the UK from 28.8% in 2018 to 30.1% in 2019, according to the latest report from global ecommerce insights firm Edge by Ascential.

$30bn in sales

The report reveals that Amazon dominates UK ecommerce (30.1%), accounting for $30bn in sales in 2019. 

The next biggest player is eBay, which takes a 9.8% share of the online market, followed by Sainsbury’s (4.6%), Tesco (4.5%), Walmart/Asda (3.9%), and John Lewis (3.6%). 

UK 3rd largest ecommerce market

The UK is the world’s third largest ecommerce market behind China and the US, accounting for $101bn in 2019. 

Moreover, Edge by Ascential analysts predict that ecommerce’s share of chain retail will continue to rapidly increase in the UK, expanding from 21% in 2019 to 26% in 2024. 

Retailer trends for 2020 

Edge by Ascential analysts have identified three key planning factors for retailers in 2020:

  • Speed of fulfilment will become a competitive battlefield for retailers – as the consumer demand for speed and convenience continues to grow, retailers will place more focus in supporting fast and flexible supply chains to meet this need, asking suppliers to support their more agile operations with improved service levels.
  • Brexit will disrupt cross-border trade and regulatory alignment – although the precise shape and timing of Brexit remains uncertain, retailers and brands must be prepared to face short-term disruption from potential trade tariffs, border delays and currency volatility. UK brands and retailers must therefore closely monitor future regulation, future-proof supply chains as well as ensure compliance with EU product standards to defend their existing market positions. 
  • Expect further blurring of physical stores and online touchpoints – there will be further shifts towards omnichannel shopping, particularly in grocery, as food retailers recognise its huge growth potential. Retailers will need to leverage data and analytics to sharpen their market positionings, develop distinct channel strategies for product ranges and build out experiences in-store and online. 

Nick Everitt, Director of Advisory EMEA at Edge by Ascential, said: “The UK ecommerce market is the third largest in the world, and the largest in Europe, and with increasing connectivity coupled with growing consumer demand for convenience, UK retailers are under serious pressure to revolutionise their omnichannel experience in 2020.

“This is all the more crucial as pure-play online platforms such as Amazon and eBay continue to expand and dominate in the UK market, driving third party operations that give greater control to brands selling on the platform but open up fierce competition and require care and attention from those selling in the marketplace. 

“Finding the right balance between a sophisticated online offering and an engaging in-store presence is a key aspect to sustaining success. 

“However, it’s important that retailers focus on their entire offering across the supply chain in order to meet the needs of consumers, whilst preparing in advance for impending challenges like Brexit along the way.”