Same as in other European countries, ecommerce is very popular in Spain, which is actually one of the largest ecommerce markets in Europe. According to data from 2021, the e-commerce market turnover in Spain was more than 57 billion euros, an increase by 12% compared to the previous year.
According to available data, there are more than 85,000 e-shops in Spain, ¼ of which are created through Prestashop. Of the total number of e-shops, 22,000 e-shops operate only on Amazon.
Specifics of the Spanish ecommerce market
As far as the Spanish market is concerned, there are several specificities that characterize it that are slightly different from other countries:
1. Emphasis on price and reviews – the Spanish like to compare prices of products and follow reviews from users who have already bought the products.
2. Mobile shopping – the Spanish like to shop from mobile devices, so you should focus on having an e-shop optimized for mobile and tablet shopping
3. Cross – border shopping – it is typical for the Spanish to frequently shop from abroad. Such purchases account for approximately 50 – 60% of all purchases.
Buying behavior – what Spanish customers demand
Comparison sites and marketplaces – in 2017, 70% of all purchases were made via comparison sites and marketplaces. Spanish shoppers are price sensitive and like to compare prices of different merchants to get the best deal. So, when expanding, you need to register your eshop to Spanish price comparison sites and of course have the best XML feed possible.
Customer service in Spanish – Spanish customers are more sensitive to customer support being in Spanish, so for this market we would recommend that you consider having a person on customer support who is fluent in Spanish.
Emphasis on price and reviews – as we already mentioned, Spanish customers like to make decisions based on reviews and ratings from other customers, so it’s important for merchants to get positive reviews on various platforms, ideally on their own e-shop as well.
Spanish customers prefer different payment methods when shopping on e-shops. The most commonly used are debit and credit cards (Visa, Maestro), bank transfers and e-wallets (e.g. Paypal). Payment by card is related to the credibility of the e-shop, i.e. for more well-known e-shops, users are more willing to pay by card (and thus pay in advance).
Package delivery speed is very important for many Spanish ecommerce customers and they expect their orders to be delivered within 1 to 4 days from the date of their order. Delivery methods can vary depending on the specific ecommerce store and the specific order, but some of the most common package delivery methods in Spain include:
1. Delivery services such as DHL, FedEx, UPS
2. Correos postal and courier services – for smaller orders and regional delivery
3. Parcel machines are another alternative that allows customers to pick up their parcel at a predetermined address.
4. Personal pick up in the store – some e-shops also offer the possibility of personal collection at their place of operation.
Largest e-shops in Spain
When it comes to the largest e-shops in Spain, there are both local and international e-shops operating here. At the same time, some of them are also marketplaces and therefore smaller merchants can sell their products on them. The biggest e-shops in Spain include:
1. Amazon.es – represents approximately 30% of the ecommerce market in Spain
2. El Corte Inglés
6. Media Markt
Where to run online campaigns?
When it comes to running ads, we recommend starting to advertise on marketplaces and price comparison sites. We then advise you to run performance campaigns also via Google Ads, Facebook and Microsoft Ads.
Marketplaces: this is mainly Amazon, where smaller e-shops can also advertise. For the customer, it is important to be able to compare products from several retailers in one place and to buy directly on the marketplace. At the same time, Marketplaces allow customers to rate and review products and services, which can help an e-shop quickly gain positive ratings and increase credibility.
Google Ads: For Google campaigns, it is recommended to start with performance PPC campaigns for Google search. For example, you can run Performance Max campaigns where you can also get the advantage of cheaper clicks when using a CSS service. Don’t forget that Spain is a large market, which also allows you to target your ads more precisely, for example to larger cities or regions.
Facebook and Instagram: you will also get the advantage of very precise targeting options for ad campaigns. For example, you can pinpoint demographics (age, gender) and interests according to your target group.
Microsoft Ads campaigns: currently, the share of the Bing search engine is growing significantly, currently Bing has a share of around 5% in Spain, which is around 2.3 million users per month. It is very likely that Bing’s share will grow even more significantly and therefore it makes sense to automate your PPC campaigns now to gain an advantage over your competitors.
Price comparison sites: There are several large price comparison sites in Spain that are very popular with customers and are used to compare prices of different products and services. We recommend considering advertising on Idealo.es, Tiendas.com and Tien21.es price comparison sites.
Summary and conclusion
Among e-shop owners in countries around Spain (mainly France, Italy and Germany), expansion into Spain is very often mentioned. One can also take advantage of the fact that Spanish customers like to buy from quality e-shops outside of Spain.
As with campaigns for other markets, you need to have online campaigns tailored for the Spanish market (keywords, landing pages) and in this case, more than in other markets, it is vital to have Spanish speaking support. If you are expanding into Spain from a country that is geographically further away, put the emphasis on logistics to be able to deliver packages in around 2 and 4 days.