Mary Meeker is a now legendary venture capitalist who annually presents the year’s most essential online statistics and trends in her famous Internet Trends Report. The report, while citing key data points – growth in certain areas of internet use, online shopping trends, and indicators of the future of the workplace – consists of almost 300 slides of data. It is highly oriented around the US, but there is still a lot to take from it that applies to a global audience.
To start, we see that people are still continuing to increase the amount of time they spend online which of course correlates with the overall growth in digital media consumption and increased ad costs. Roughly 50% of the world (about 3.6 billion people) now have some access to the internet and the average adult spends about 6 hours per day with a digital device.
The presentation was released at the end of May – here are a few take-aways on the e-commerce side:
- Rapid Growth of E-commerce in Mobile. Mobile is largely powering the growth of e-commerce, and e-commerce is largely powering the growth of retail. This has been a rising trend for years and years now: more people have smartphones, those smartphones are always with them, they’re using said smartphones over 3 hours/day which reflects where people browse and buy.
- E-commerce sales growth is continuing to accelerate. Roughly 13% of all retail sales come from e-commerce, up from about 5% a decade ago.
- E-commerce vs Brick & Mortar. E-commerce growth quickens as now 13% of all retail purchases happen online, signalling big opportunities for new shopping apps. The way consumers discover products is also changing, fuelled in part by Facebook and Instagram, with their feed ads feature. Revenue gains for services like Facebook are tightly coupled with daily user growth, showing how profitable it is to become a regular habit.
- Growth continues in internet advertising. While percent of time spent in media and percent of ad spend declined in print, radio and TV, Meeker identified a $7 billion opportunity in ad spend in mobile as time spent was up 29 percent and ad spend was up 26 percent.
- Amazon = e-commerce. At least in the U.S.
- Search is changing. The way consumers search is changing. Now, 49 percent of product searches in the US start at Amazon—36 percent start on a search engine. Another win for Amazon.
- Mobile payments are becoming easier to complete. China continues to lead the rest of the world in mobile payment adoption, with over 500 million active mobile payment users in 2017.