Berlin Maintains Top Position in German Online Trade Ranking

Brandenburg and Bavaria are the German federal states that have most improved their ranking in German online trade, while Berlin remains the state with the highest e-commerce activity. According to the E-commerce Report 2010 by Deutsche Card Services, Brandenburg belongs to the top five states in online trade, and Bavaria climbed from rank 11 to rank 7. Bremen lost most, dropping from rank 4 to rank 11.

While the inhabitants of Bremen are not particularly active in e-commerce, the state generates the highest transaction values, as its citizens often buy luxury goods (worth more than €500) online. The citizens of Hamburg do the opposite and buy goods worth less than €10 online – a value category which typically covers services such downloads.

While Hamburg’s citizens do not spend much on each individual purchase, they are very regular customers at online shops. The analysis by two-digit postal areas puts them at the top of the list of the most diligent online purchasers, taking over from Essen (which dropped to rank 6) and ahead of the centre of Berlin and the postal digit area 63 (Aschaffenburg/Hanau/Offenbach am Main/Miltenberg). Among the top-20 of the most active online purchasers, Bonn/Remagen/Siegburg/Euskirchen (postal digit area: 53) improved its position most, whereas Karlsruhe/Baden-Baden/Landau in der Pfalz/Bruchsal (postal digit area: 76) lost most.

A comparison between the western and eastern federal states showed that the latter are now more willing to use up-to-date online payment methods such as credit cards or giropay. The overall share of these payment methods rose to 46%, from 43% in the preceding year, and might touch the 50% threshold next year.

Just like two years before, the most active credit card users hail from the centre of
Frankfurt. The city took back its top rank from the centre of Berlin; the leader of the preceding year dropped to rank 11 and thus even lost its top-10 position.

The 2010 report showed that large cities are the main credit card strongholds. Surprisingly, two other parts of Berlin – the south and southeast (postal digit area: 12) and the north (postal digit area: 13) – are the regions where direct debits are most popular. Behind Frankfurt am Main, Munich, the centre of Hamburg and the postal digit area 40 (Dusseldorf, Hilden, Mettmann, Ratingen) are the regions with the most active card users.

At 0.52%, Berlin registers the highest chargeback ratio of all federal states; the chargeback ratio is the share of credit card transactions charged back after a complaint by the cardholder. However, Berlin is also the state with the most active online shoppers.

Deutsche Card Services found that the non-payment risk is once again lowest in Saxony-Anhalt. Hessen and Brandenburg offer high payment security, too: Hessen, a state where e-commerce activity is high, registers high payment security, and Brandenburg is the state where the overall non-payment risk is lowest for both card payments and direct debits. Overall, the report shows that there are no major differences in terms of non-payment risk between the eastern and western federal states.


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