E-commerce & Shopping Trends of Italy

Italians enjoy living a comfortable, fashionable, and carefree lifestyle. That way of life means they prefer to know what to expect so they can plan things ahead of time. So, having to reschedule plans due to delays and an inability to track their shipments is a big faux pas!

With PackageHopper, we provide updated and detailed tracking info for your packages so you can easily manage the expectations of your Italian clients. Our affordable prices make PackageHopper the best choice for shipping to Italy!

Italian E-commerce Trends

Italy is a top shopping destination for many. Travelers visiting Italy are buying from, and Italians themselves love a great find in local stores. But luckily for us, they also love finding deals and shopping for amazing things online! More than half the population (52%) bought something online in 2020. Italy is the 15th largest market in the world for e-commerce and its revenue in 2020 reached $22,416 million—a big contribution to the worldwide growth rate.

When it comes to what sells best, websites that are multilingual, multi-currency, and offer goods from multiple brands are Italians’ favorites.

The Most Popular Sectors

Because of the Covid pandemic in 2020, sales of goods reached 56% and surpassed sales of services (44%) for the first time. Italians were ordering food and shopping online more than ever! And due to the country’s very strict lockdown, people from many parts of Italy were not allowed to leave their homes for days, even weeks, unless there was an emergency. This would have driven up online shopping and services. 

Pandemic aside, Tourism is the usual most popular e-commerce sector in Italy with 32% of the market value. Those visiting Italy contributed a large portion of Italy’s spending. Next in line was Electronics with a 25% market share, Publishing with 13%, and Fashion with 8%. After all, Italy is known for (and exports a lot of) big luxury fashion brands like Versace, Armani, Prada, and more.

The top 3 most popular online-shopping websites made up 25% of Italy’s online revenue last year. The biggest was amazon.it with a revenue of $4.1 billion in 2020, followed by esselungaacasa.it with $693 million revenue, and finally unieuro.it with $575 million in revenue. 

Italians are not known to enjoy shopping from store to store; hence their love of amazon.it—they love getting everything in one place! Stores with a wide range of goods are more likely to succeed within the Italian shopper base.

Beautiful Country, Great Economy

The standard of living in Italy is very high thanks to its free-market economy, although due to the diversified industrial economy, there are some noticeable differences in standards between the north and the south. At $2.11 trillion, Italy is the 8th largest by nominal GDP in the world and 3rd in the EU. The business economic sector there is considered to be one of the most creative. And you know who else is creative and has a business that will flourish in Italy? Of course, it’s you! Take this as a sign to prepare your online shop for your new Italian customers.

Preferred Shopping Devices and Payment Methods

Statistics show that 49% of online purchases in 2020 were made from a desktop computer or a tablet, while 51% were made from mobile phones. However, it is worth mentioning that in 2015, smartphone shopping contributed to a total of only 12%. This was not too long ago, so apart from people just spending more time on their phones overall, e-commerce technology has made it exponentially easier for them to buy things with just one tap. As a merchant, you should pay attention to how your products are going to look on the average Italian consumer’s phone, so you might want to pay a professional to design your brand.

Speaking of paying, 33.8% of Italians prefer to pay with credit cards, 32.3% use digital wallets, 14.1% use other services (PayPal, Skrill, or something else), 11.6% use bank transfer, and 8.3% prefer paying with cash upon the arrival of their order. 

An important thing to keep in mind is that a lot of Italians use the CartaSi card, besides Mastercard and Visa, so you might want to investigate whether adding that payment option would be beneficial to your business.

Pack Neatly and Be Aware of Duties and Taxes

This is the part where PackageHopper comes in handy. Not only can ship with us at affordable prices, but we also guide you along the way regarding packaging, duties, and taxes with a wealth of knowledge and experience in international shipping.

It is of utmost importance that your package arrives at its destination in one piece and within the expected acceptable time frame, so ensuring you’ve printed and put on all the labels provided to you is very important. You can read more about each step of the process on this link

Also, if you are unsure if you can ship an item, you can look through this list of restricted or prohibited items—but feel free to reach out to us and we’ll help you figure it out! Each destination country can have its own import restrictions so it’s important to know this before you send off your precious cargo.

Shipping and Delivery Expectations 

Everyone loves seeing a “free shipping” message next to their order, and so do 55% of Italians—especially women, according to data.

In a 2019 survey with 982 responders, 55% declared that tracking and delivery time were very important to them, and in 2020, 66% of the 1000 responders declared they were willing to wait for their package no more than 3-5 days. An astonishing 96% of online shoppers want to be able to track their online orders.

With PackageHopper you’ll get to knock out both requirements: we offer 1-5 business days delivery with our carriers and informative tracking so you’ll always know where your package is and when your recipient can expect it at their doorstep!

Be an Unforgettable Seller

Italians know all the tricks when it comes to buying and selling. After all, trades have been an ongoing practice on their land for millennia—from the ancient Romans to current day, and surely for the days to come.

Be polite and responsive to any inquiries you receive, give thorough answers, and maybe even up your branding. Add a ribbon or ink stamping that makes your brand memorable, throw in a small thank you note, or have special wrapping tissue! There are so many ways to stand out, don’t be scared to experiment and see what works best for you and your clients.


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