PayPal, a leading enabler of global commerce*, has recently released an analysis over the activity of merchants in Czech Republic, Greece, Hungary, Romania and Poland. According to PayPal’s data, all merchants from the mentioned countries, have noticed increases in foreign sales up 21% to 48%, during the first half of 2014.
Czech merchants saw an increase of 48%, while Polish ones cashed in 45% more money in the first six months of 2014, compared to the same period a year before. Romanian merchants posted a 36% increase, while Greek and Hungarian ones had just 30% and 21%.
The common key export categories for the five CEE markets are fashion, auto parts, electronics, website services and software. Czechs, Greeks, and Hungarians, were leading in travel services, while Polish, Romanian and Hungarians did so in gaming.
Global level data shows that online exports continue to grow strongly, regardless of domestic and traditional exports slowing down in the case of many economies. This trend is especially visible within EU 27, where shipping costs are relatively low and custom fees are not applicable.
With Romanian (10%), Czech (27%), Greek (10%), Hungarian (13%) and Polish (11%) merchants selling online, a third and a half of their orders came from EU countries in 2012 (Romania – 37%, Czech Republic – 47%, Greece – 44%, Hungary – 33% and Poland – 34%).
The size of this opportunity should not be underestimated. Cross-border trade in 2013 constituted 25% of PayPal’s Total Payment Value – the total value of transactions, which was $180 billion that year, with new online export corridors fast emerging
Managing Director of PayPal Central and Eastern Europe.
North America is a region that generates significant sales for merchants from Czech Republic (35%), Romania (47%), Hungary (34%), Greece (31%) and Poland (25%). In Romania’s case, North America is the main region that generates sales, while for Czech Republic, Greece, Hungary, and Poland Europe is the main region that generated revenues for merchants that sell online in the first six months of the year.
When it comes to consumers and their buying habits, they prefer to make purchases from shops that have PayPal as an option, since it offers them safety and buyer protection. It means that buyers can apply for reimbursement in case they do not receive the purchased item or the item does not match the description provided by the seller. According to the Ipsos Vantis studymade on multiple European markets, buyers from UK (62% locally and 58% internationally), Germany (65% locally and 58% internationally) and France (40%) prefer to use PayPal and always do so if a shop offers PayPal as a payment option.
The survey also indicates that one third of cross-border shoppers from countries like UK, Germany or France do not realize that the product was bought from a foreign merchant. Over the last few years, stores in Central and Eastern Europe developed, matured and started looking for opportunities abroad. Leaders offer an interface in the most popular languages, like English or German. Shopping and checkout are optimized for mobile and every delivery may be tracked in real-time.
PayPal is an eBay company and is the faster, safer way to pay and get paid, as it gives people simpler ways to send money without sharing financial information, and also flexibility to pay using their account balances, bank accounts or credit cards. Founded in 1998, PayPal is processing 9.3 million payments for its customers every day. There are 152 million active registered accounts on PayPal and the company is helping people and businesses receive and make payments in more than 100 currencies in 203 markets.
*PayPal Total Payment Volume in 2013 was $180 billion, up 24% year over year on an FX neutral basis. Visit investor.ebayinc.com for more information.