Online shooping

Monday brings fresh data from Questia Group. This week’s study addresses Romanian’s online shopping behavior, at the beginning of 2017. Our research was made through an online survey on our platform covering 1,137 respondents, with a plus or minus 3% margin of error. The survey was active between the 10th and 12th of January 2017.

In the European context, in 2016 two-thirds of internet users made online purchases. According to the European Commission, the share of e-shoppers in internet users is growing, with the highest proportions being found in the 16-24 and 25-54 age groups (68% and 69% respectively). The proportion of e-shoppers varied considerably across Member States, ranging from 18 % of internet users) in Romania to 87 % in the United Kingdom.

In 2015, over 5.3 million of Romanian internet users visited e-shops (61.8% reach). According to the estimations of the Romanian e-commerce GPeC, during 2014-2016, the e-commerce market in Romania saw dynamic changes. The percentage of people aged 25-44 has continually accounted for around 50% of users of online shops while other age groups have shown big changes. Moreover, the total value of Romanian online retail has grown from 1.1 billion EUR in 2014 to over 1.4 billion EUR in 2015.

In our study, most Romanians usually go shopping (in shops and online) less than once a week (60%), while more than a third go once a week (23.7%). A 10.3% go shopping 2-3 times per month, while almost 6% shop once a month and less than once a month. Thus, we can say that shopping - whether in shops or online - represents a weekly activity for most Romanians.

Shopping behvior

As for the ways through which Romanians shop, the numbers show an interesting equilibrium: 49.5% generally both shop in stores and online, 49.5% shop only in stores while 1.1% say they only shop online. The 1.1% will probably increase throughout the next years since almost all shops allow for their products to be bought online. However, the mix between in-store and online purchasing remains at top.


Asked when they shopped online the last time, most our respondents have shopped during the same week of our survey (45.5%). Some (12.6%) have shopped two weeks ago, while others (13.4%) three weeks ago. A quarter has made online shopping more than 3 weeks ago, during the holiday shopping. If you are interested in the channels through which Romanians purchased their products for last year's holidays, see our study here.


When it comes to the main types of purchases, our data shows interesting insights. The top three products that most Romanians purchased online are electronics and home appliances (47.4%), clothes, shoes and accessories (35.8%), personal care products and cosmetics (29.7%). Books, CDs and DVDs were bought in a percentage of 16.5%, followed by food (8.5%) and tickets to events, movies or concerts (5.5%).


In the EU, the most popular type of goods and services purchased online were clothes and sports goods (61%), followed by travel and holiday accommodation (52%). Online shoppers aged 16-24 were the top age group buying clothes and sports goods purchases (69 %), while those aged 25-54 were top buyers of household goods (49%). In Romania, as in the other Member States, the level of online purchasing has increased since 2012 from 11% to 18% for individuals who have used the internet in 2016.

Below there is a photo capturing internet users who bought or ordered goods or services in the previous 12 months in 2012 and 2016, in Europe.

internet users and bought goods

Overall, online purchasing is taking an upward trend, whether it is for buying electronics, clothes, shoes or other products. Stay connected to Questia’s numerous studies on various trends that will weekly unfold throughout 2017.