The increase in the number of e-commerce users in Portugal this year is the fastest in 18 years, with the pandemic accelerating the trend, according to the National Statistics Institute (INE).
According to INE, the percentage of e-commerce users increased seven percentage points this year compared to the previous year. However, Portugal remains below the European Union average with regard to the use of the internet for shopping.
During the first two weeks of November, already during the second wave of the COVID-19 pandemic, there was a 12% decrease in physical purchases and a 32% growth in online purchases.
According to SIBS Analytics, that monitors payment systems in Portugal, from the summer months until October 2020 physical sales recovered from the first wave of the pandemic, with a peak between July and September, when there was only a 4% drop compared to 2019.
In March and April 2020, there was a drop in 33% in sales using banking cards, and in November there was a further decrease of 12% in relation to 2019, according to the same source.
From 1 to 15 November 2020, the average value of purchases was 36.2 euros in physical stores and 34.4 euros in e-commerce.