Has Ecommerce in the U.S. become saturated? [Infographic]

Visakan Veerasamy
Visakan Veerasamy
January 2, 2017
2 min read
Has Ecommerce in the U.S. become saturated? [Infographic]

In this article

The question on the minds of many in the U.S. ecommerce market, especially those new to the scene, is this:

Does the large U.S. ecommerce market still have room to grow?

We were curious to find out as well and so looked at the various data sources out there to create the following infographic. We’ve got to say, the future does look pretty exciting!

Has ecommerce in the U.S. become saturated?

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In 2012, global B2C ecommerce sales topped $1,000,000,000,000 ($1 trillion!) for the first time. How did the U.S. perform?

Top 5 Countries in B2C Ecommerce Sales (2012)

  1. US – $343.43 billion
  2. Japan – $127.82 billion
  3. UK – $124.76 billion
  4. China – $110.04 billion
  5. Germany – $47 billion

The volume of ecommerce sales in the US is almost equal to the volume of Japan, UK and China combined!


So you might think that the US ecommerce market must be pretty saturated.

But is that the case?

Digital Buyers (and Population) in Top 5 Countries in B2c Ecommerce Sales (2012) [in millions, rounded up]

  1. China– 220m buyers out of 1,351m population (16%)
  2. US – 150m buyers out of 314m population (47%)
  3. Japan – 73m buyers out of 128m population (73%)
  4. Germany – 41m buyers out of 82m population (50%)
  5. UK – 35m buyers out of 63m population (54%)

Despite the US ranking first in ecommerce sales, it has a lower percentage of digital buyers than Japan, UK and Germany.


Less thank half of the US population buys online. But they must be spending lots of money, right?

Average B2C Ecommerce Sales per Digital Buyer in the Top 5 Countries in B2C Ecommerce Sales (2012)

  1. UK – $3,585
  2. US – $2,293
  3. Japan – $1,743
  4. Germany – $1,141
  5. China – $501

At first glance, the large US ecommerce market looks mature. Turns out it still has lots of room to grow!

Visakan Veerasamy
Visakan Veerasamy

Visa is ReferralCandy's former Blog Editor [2013–2018]. He also co-founded Statement.sg, a fashion ecommerce label selling witty t-shirts. He's mildly Internet-famous for his elaborate Twitter threads. He hopes to enjoy a glass of scotch onboard a commercial space flight someday.

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