Since the fall of the Soviet Union and the subsequent unprecedented recession, Russia has defied all odds to come back as a global economic powerhouse.
Although slower than other territories to embrace e-commerce, all signs are now pointing towards this nascent market taking off in a big way in the near future.
With a GDP of $1.68tn, Russia is the world’s 11th biggest economy. A burgeoning middle class means that more Russian shoppers have increasingly more money to spend online. Factor in a huge population with excellent access to modern tech (85% of 144.5m Russians use the internet) and the scene seems set for a Russian e-commerce revolution.
Asendia’s Partnership Manager and expert in all things e-commerce, Benoit Chaigneau, reveals what he makes of this promising market in his interview with RetailX. Read on to find out more.
Q&A with BENOIT CHAIGNEAU
PARTNERSHIP MANAGER, ASENDIA
1) What trends have you observed in Russia concerning e-commerce market size?
Due to a general lack of trust and a preference for making cash payments, Russian consumers have been fairly slow to adopt online shopping but that’s all changing. Russian e-commerce has been in constant growth for several years, reaching 1,620 trillion rubles (US$24.9bn) in 2019, which is up 25% on figures for 2018. The volume of orders rose even more dramatically in the same period, reaching 425m parcels (up 41%), although the average value of each order has decreased.
2) What do Russian shoppers tend to buy online?
Russian consumers are often looking for low-value goods, mainly from China. This represents the bulk of items ordered, hence the average order value decreasing recently. Such goods, however, only represent 53% of total cross-border revenue.
Many Russians are also going online to find a larger choice of brands and higher quality goods – especially for things like clothing, footwear and accessories.
3) What do Russian consumers expect when shopping online?
For 70% of Russian e-shoppers, the three main priorities are low prices, fast delivery and a good selection. In fact, 74% of Russians shopping online say that receiving the product as quickly as possible is central to the delivery experience.
Russians also want control of delivery times. On a global scale, Russia is in the top three countries where shoppers want deliveries at a specified time or within a few hours. Asendia work very closely with our delivery partners across Russia to help e-tailers meet their customers’ expectations.
Still curious? For a comprehensive yet concise look at e-commerce trends in Russia, and to read the rest of Benoit's interview, download the Russia 2020: Ecommerce Country Report by RetailX in partnership with Asendia.