Turkey - Country Commercial Guide

Describes how widely e-Commerce is used, the primary sectors that sell through e-commerce, and how much product/service in each sector is sold through e-commerce versus brick-and-mortar retail. Includes what a company needs to know to take advantage of e-commerce in the local market and, reputable, prominent B2B websites.

Last published date: 2020-10-07

In 2019, the eCommerce market grew over 17%, reaching $14.6 billion. Online goods were the largest contributing sub-sector with 26% growth in USD and 48% growth in TRY. The average growth rate over the last 5 years has been 13%.

eCommerce chart showing growth over 2017-2022 period
eCommerce Maret Growth


Source: http://www.tubisad.org.tr 

Credits cards are the lead payment method in terms of revenue (71% of revenue, 40% of transactions) when shopping online, and sales are nearly equally divided between Visa and MasterCard. PayPal suspended operations in Turkey due to regulations mandating the payment industry to localize its customer data. Bank transfer (21% of revenue, 48% of transactions) and payment on delivery (7% of revenue, 13% of transactions) are also preferred for smaller orders. According to the Interbank Card Center (BKM) 2.56 million unique cards were used online on Black Friday, and online retail accounted for 30% of total card usage.

In 2020, COVID-19 has changed the online retail landscape. According to BKM, 5 million cards were used online for the first time during March and April, raising the total number of unique cards to 18 million. According to the Ministry of Trade, eCommerce grew 48% through May 2020 compared with the same period in 2019 despite the 75-80% decrease in the tourism sub-sector.

The Ministry of Trade recently introduced ETBIS (eCommerce Information System) through a new platform (www.eticaret.gov.tr), where businesses are required to register and customers can query eCommerce sites. They also introduced an 80% subsidy of membership costs to eCommerce sites in 2020 and 60% thereafter, up to 2 years per membership.

Social media plays a significant role as it is the predominant reason for internet usage in Turkey. Most research prior to purchase is done on mobile devices and mobile purchases recently reached 50% as well. According to Nielsen report, 9 out of 10 users consider promotions and discounts and 68% say they are not loyal to brands when shopping online. More than half of the purchases had shipment included in the price.

Webrazzi (www.webrazzi.com/en) organizes eCommerce summits yearly, bringing various service providers, marketing and the eCommerce sector together.