Global e-channel expanded by 33% in 2013 according to Icecat.Greek & Eastern European defied crisis

Highlights E-channel 2013
• Global e-channel expanded by 33% in 2013
• Greek & CEE e-channel defies crisis
• HP leads in IT, Philips in Consumer Electronics
• Mobile cases, Coffee-makers & Lighting surge

Online PR News – 24-January-2014 – Amsterdam – Global E-channel expands by 33% in 2013 and generates 2 Billion data-sheet downloads
The number of connected channel partners has expanded in 2013 with 33% compared to 2012. In 2013 Icecat facilitated 2 Billion data-sheet downloads (DDs) for products from 7.469 different brands in 163 different countries. A data-sheet contains a product’s specifications as standardized by Icecat, and additional data if permitted by the respective brand. The numbers of monitored brands increased with 26% and the number of supported categories grew 17%. The number of supported ecommerce platforms increased steeply with 43%.

Greece’ e-channel defies crisis
The Global e-channel expands most rapidly in Eastern-Europe, BRICS, and PIGS. It’s interesting to notice that Greece (+198%) is a leading country in 2013, based on the activity of its e-channel. It’s probably a combination of the ecommerce wave reaching the “periphery”, and the crisis: the need to compare prices, buy cheaper online and do something new to make money. Also the other PIGS, Portugal (+27%), Italy (+27%) and Spain (+20%), can be found in the higher growth regions. Maybe the euro crisis is healthy after all? Or is Greece more comparable Eastern Europe, which is swallowed by ecommerce fever, like growth leaders Latvia (+290%) and Bulgaria (+282%)? As expected, the BRICS can all be found in the fast-growth segment as internet penetrations are rising in these markets: South Africa (+104%), China (+74%), Brazil (+42%), India (+42%), Russia (+41%).
Most mature ecommerce markets can be found in the 10%-20% growth range, like Germany, the US, UK, The Netherlands, Canada, and the Nordics.

Philips closing gap with HP as global e-channel brand
The relative position of the champion of the e-channel, HP (17% share) is under pressure in 2013. The difference with a runner up, now Philips (6% share), has never been so small. The global e-channel is increasingly an ICT & Electronics channels. In the top 10 E-Channel Brands, there are no big surprises, but Canon and Toshiba are relatively in decline.

The fastest growing brand in the global e-channel, as measured by Icecat, is Philips’ coffeemaker brand Saeco. Saeco scores high as its brand is relatively new in the e-channel, and it benefits from Philips’ (+258%) assertive e-channel strategies. Other fast-growth brands, like MicroScreen (+758%) and Equip (+523%) are more expectable computer accessory brands.

Mobile cases, Coffee-makers and Lighting surge
Although Tablets (+162%) and Smartphones (+110%) make the headlines and do well, they are in the global e-channel just categories 29 and 37. And although the same headlines declare Notebooks (+29%) dead, it’s still by far the most dominant category. It’s unlikely that that will change in the near future, as slimmer and hybrid form factors start to absorb advantages of Tablets. The Notebook is still unmatched in the workplace.

The popularity of mobile form factors is reflected in the top 10 fast-growth categories in 2013: the surge in interest in Mobile phone cases (+304%) and Tablet cases (+310%). Clearly, it’s more difficult to select a matching case then the mobile product itself.
2013 was for the E-channel the year of lighting, which is reflected in the dazzling expansion of Wall lighting and Lighting spots. The expansion of other household categories like Vacuum cleaners (+275%), Fridge-freezers (+198%), and LED TVs (+192%) fit already in a long-term trend. The rapid expansion of Coffee-makers (+268%) was, however, relatively new.

About Icecat
Icecat NV is an independent worldwide publisher of ecommerce statistics and syndicator of product content.

Icecat standardized millions of product data-sheets in 35 world languages and analyzes the performance of 7000+ brands. Its statistics are based on 2 billion annual product data-sheets downloads by tens of thousands connected ecommerce websites: online shops, ERP systems, comparison sites, purchase systems, rating portals, and other applications.
Open Icecat is an open catalog, part of Icecat's full catalog, via which the product content for 300+ technology brands is distributed for free.

The download popularity of a brand's products is influenced by:
• popularity of its individual products,
• availability of its products via distributors and online channel partners,
• level of standardization of its product data for search & comparison engines,
• online campaigns,
• compatibility, cross-sell and up-sell intelligence,
• free of charge distribution of (multimedia) product data.

Disclaimer: due to updated measurement methodology, the published historic data may differ a bit from report to report. However, within the same report the same methodology is used to take care of valid comparability. Only the indirect online channel activities of brands are measured.