Amazon Marketplace Drove a Fifth of US E-Commerce

The Census Bureau of the Department of Commerce released the most recent estimates of the US online retail. Customers spent $453.46 billion online in 2017, a 16% increase from the previous year.

U.S. E-Commerce Sales

For the first time e-commerce sales represented more than 10% of total retail sales at 10.5%. E-commerce share has been increasing by 100 basis points (1%) for the past couple years. However the Census Bureau figure includes sales of items not normally bought online, thus e-commerce represents a higher percent.

The total value of transactions from U.S. consumers on reached $189.61 billion last year, as estimated by Internet Retailer. This includes Amazon’s own sales, and sales from marketplace sellers. They estimate that Amazon’s GMV grew 30.1% compared to $145.72 billion in 2016.

Amazon accounted for 41% of online retail sales last year, up from 37% in 2016. Amazon doesn’t disclose marketplace GMV, forcing analysts to rely on estimates based on third-party seller services revenue, percent of units by marketplace sellers, and others. By most estimates Amazon accounts 40-45% of US online retail.

Amazon marketplace thus is roughly 20% of the total US e-commerce.

While an invisible component of Amazon’s business except for those actively participating, the marketplace has grown to be a major economy. Combined with eBay, Etsy, Walmart, Jet, and Wish marketplaces they represent more than a third of the total.

This year Amazon marketplace will generate more than $100 billion in sales in the US alone. A figure which is larger than most countries’ total online retail sales. For example, German e-commerce association Bevh estimated Germany’s online retail at $72 billion last year.

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Juozas "Joe" Kaziuk─Śnas

Founder of Marketplace Pulse, Joe wears multiple hats in the management of Marketplace Pulse, including writing most of the articles. Based in New York City. Advisor to other startups and entrepreneurs. Occasional speaker at conferences.

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