The COVID-19 outbreak is responsible for the extreme growth of 82% in the number of online purchases, according to Picqer, warehouse software for web shops. Picqer says it has analyzed data from thousands of online stores in the Netherlands. Most notable growth was seen during the first lockdown.
It is no longer news that the COVID-19 outbreak had a major impact on the e-commerce industry in 2020. When most physical stores closed in March, the number of online orders shot up. In the months that followed, growth remained high, namely 69% more than 2019.
Press conferences impacted the growth
The Prime Minister’s press conferences in the Netherlands also impacted growth in online purchases, with the day before the April 21 press conference having the greatest impact. 324% more orders were placed on this day than on this day in 2019.
Black Friday busiest day of 2020
Nevertheless, Black Friday was the busiest day of 2020. This year, more online stores devoted a whole week to Black Friday. This Black Week accounts for almost 5% of the total number of orders in 2020. In addition, it grew by 121% compared to 2019.
Furthermore, there has also been a shift in crowds during the week of Black Friday. Rather than just peak hours with Black Friday and Cyber Monday, as in 2019 and earlier, in 2020 the crowds were more spread throughout Black Week. This is because web stores were more likely to give discounts in order to spread the pressure on the shipping partners.
The second COVID-19 lockdown resulted in an increase of 114% in online purchases compared to 2019. This is partly because we had to buy almost all Christmas shopping online this year. In 2020, the weeks before Christmas are comparable to the Black Friday week in terms of crowds. In comparison, in 2019, the weeks before Christmas were 17% less busy than Black Friday. The day PostNL introduced a maximum number of parcels to be shipped per web shop, December 21, became one of the busiest days of the year.