Three years ago, the worst economic crisis started since the Great Depression began. Despite this negative environment, online commerce continues to grow steadily, as one of the few vectors of economic growth. It is also evident that the consumer is adapting their habits.

The impulsive buyer of the boom years, has now been a mature digital consumer, who uses the Internet to learn more and buy more selectively. As a logical consequence, these three years have seen the emergence of the online savings community as highlighted by Sergio Garasa, general director of MundoOfertas, one of the most popular communities focused on promotions and online electronic commerce.

Internet is already the third advertising medium, behind television and newspapers and ahead of radios and magazines. According to IAB is already 11.6 percent of the advertising pie.

The recession boosts online savings communities and electronic commerce is consolidated after the data of the first quarter of the CMT that indicate a historical billing turnover of 1,669.92 million dollars, 34 percent more than in the same period of 2009

Despite the recession that our country is experiencing, set in a context of a more global crisis, it seems clear that the development of the Internet is one of the most solid values ​​of our economy. In the first half of 2010, online advertising in has billed $ 152 million, 13.5% more than in the same period of the previous year, according to the estimates of the consultancy InfoAdex.

By volume of business the Network is already the third support, behind television and newspapers and ahead of radio or magazines. On the other hand, electronic commerce closed 2009 with a volume of almost $ 5,800 million, growing at 11%. This activity still has a great potential for development if it manages to improve three key aspects: Expand the offer of products and services, achieve competitive prices online and offer a quality of service superior to the traditional one in our country.

Online marketing, key to the development of online businesses

Given the current volume limitations of e-commerce, the health of online marketing as the second way of financing and growth for these business models is key The development of Internet advertising in 2010 will undoubtedly condition the pressure on the sector towards models of payment, free, or mixed. The network is the first channel of total communication between both groups, carrying and bringing information, purchases and opinions in one direction and another in real time.

Internet allows to improve the efficiencies of marketing campaigns, obtaining by its capacity of segmentation and interactivity, a return of investment superior to the unidirectional mass media. In a context in which the whole economy fell 4% year-on-year, marketing and electronic commerce among grew by 8.6% and 13.2 respectively, the figure of the online saver emerged, a more mature consumer: Informed and prudent in its purchase, and grouped around online communities oriented to electronic commerce.

The crisis pushes electronic commerce: Historical record 1 T 2010, Buy better

Another fact that indicates the specific weight of the Internet is given by the data provided by the CMT. If during the past year The digital purchase and sale of goods and services via bank cards (credit and debit) accounted for the year 2009 in 5,751.7 million dollars, an increase of 11% compared to 2008. For this 2010, the data of the The first quarter reinforce this trend: E-commerce 2.010 in had a turnover of 1,669.92 million dollars, the highest revenue figure so far, after increasing 34.75% compared to the same quarter of the previous year.

The good performance of electronic commerce also translated into a new record in number of transactions, 23.55 million in total, The number of online operations, 56.17% higher than the same quarter of the previous year, confirmed the jump recorded between October and December 2009, when 22.11 million transactions were recorded.

Revenues from digital commerce were again concentrated in transactions related to the tourism sector, which accounted for 29.8% of the total business volume with 497.64 million dollars. These are air transport (14.9%), travel agencies and tour operators (8.2%) and land transport of travelers (6.7%).

Direct marketing, which since the second quarter of last year was ranked number two in turnover, this time fell to third place with 125.24 million. Gambling and betting, on the other hand, fell from the third to the fifth position, with 105.2 million.

The volume of business from abroad to sites increased by 1.6% compared to the same period of the previous year. In total, foreigners bought goods and services on  Internet sites for a value of 175.97 million dollars. These operations to  sites, added to those made from  to  websites, accounted for 53.3% of total business volume in the first quarter of 2010 (10.5% for external sites, 42.8% for internal sites), 891 , 2 million dollars. The real pull was, therefore, in the purchases made by the  in  stores, which increased by 58, 46% to reach 715.23 million dollars. These are the numbers of the mature  digital consumer, who is informed, compares and selects the purchase that best suits their needs.

The crisis and the consumer: the online saver is consolidated

The consumer as an Internet user, also changes their habits on the Internet. The Internet means the possibility not only of buying cheaper, but above all buying better. In the current environment of reducing consumer spending, it seems therefore that ignoring the only channel that allows any small company to compete as an equal on the computer screen with the most powerful multinational is a very high risk. Moreover, when the Internet user increasingly enters the network -10 million do it every day- looking for products, comparing offers and services, buying directly or choosing a store to visit. Therefore, the added value that matters to the Internet lies in:

  1. a) More information before the purchase: They are informed in depth of each data of the product to be purchased. The more the more value the product considered. As an anecdote, in the last few years, car dealerships have been frequently visited by customers who know the data and deeper aspects of the car they are considering buying than the seller of the house. They also comprehensively compare home or mortgage data before visiting any bank. And so on almost any large purchase.
  2. b) Test the product before acquiring it through the network, we can easily claim online from home the free vehicle test services or the sending of free product samples, (cosmetics, colognes, cleaning products, hygiene, etc …) . Two out of every three look for product samples online.
  3. c) Know how to choose and compare prices and products: There are online portals and communities that allow both discover offers and discounts of the products that interest us, or even the price detail of the same in several alternative stores. Each of these consolidated portals receives hundreds of thousands of visits from every month, and they grow at a great pace.