Internet sales in Latin America have grown at a compounded rate of 30 percent to 40 percent for the last five years, and things are likely to get even better, says Francisco Ceballos, country manager at e-tailer MercadoLibre Mexico. "As the internet becomes more affordable and we have more devices to connect to the internet, like mobile, we have more users, and as those users get more experienced, they become online shoppers."
The largest e-commerce player in Latin America, MercadoLibre facilitated the transaction of over $2bn worth of goods in 2009. Ceballos said that at about $2.7bn, Mexico's e-commerce market is up 30 percent since 2009 and currently makes up about 1.5 percent of the country's overall retail sales. But with fast-growing internet access, improved payment methods and better logistics services, he has no doubt that this number will approach 10 percent within the next few years, on par with the U.S. and Europe.
He feels strongly that retailers in the region must focus on improving the online shopping experience. "What buyers are looking for is ease of use and practicality," which is something he believes Latin American retailers can learn from their U.S. counterparts.
Ceballos will be among several e-commerce experts to address the eTail America Latina conference, April 5-7, 2011, at the Hyatt Regency in Miami.
Source: WB Research
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