Latin America's e-commerce problem

Region is a laggard when it comes e-commerce sales, with Latin America accounting for just 2% of the global total

Latin America has the second lowest per capita e-commerce sales of any region globally. According to the Freedonia Group study Global E-Commerce, e-commerce sales in Latin America totaled $80 billion in 2018, accounting for 2% of the global total. Revenues are largely driven by Brazil and Mexico, which together accounted for 57% of the region's sales in 2018.

Logistical problems – including delayed shipment or unfulfilled orders – have prevented consumers from engaging with e-commerce in the past, but solutions such as offering better refund and return policies can increase consumer satisfaction.

Improvements to postal services, the development of crowdsourced delivery, and a better focus on customer service are all expected to aid growth in online sales.

In comparison, e-commerce sales in the world as a total are projected to nearly double by 2023, expanding 13% annually to $6.7 trillion. The Asia/Pacific region includes the two countries with the largest populations in the world: China and India, affording a large market of potential e-commerce customers. North America has the highest per capita e-commerce sales in the world. A well-developed logistics framework and plenty of competition keeps total cost of fulfilment relatively low for e-commerce orders.

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