Online Shopping and E-Commerce in Turkey

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Due to increase in internet usage and technological advancements, The internet became very important in our lives. Especially, The millennials cannot live without their computers or phones. Thus, they highly targeted buy big corporations. In order to start a new business e commerce became the new trend because of several reasons. The most important reasons are its ease of accessibility, low of capital need and it is so new needs entrepreneurs. So, it can be the key of future economic success of Turkey.

In this research, I used descriptive and survey method in order to show how much Turkish people involved in e commerce and how willing to buy products from online. I have faced problems, While trying to find English references of Turkeys’ articles. The articles I searched from google scholar and google by itself was not enough or was not in English. As I mentioned before it is almost untapped territory, it is really hard to find information about ecommerce in Turkey. When, I asked the questionnaire to random people, they mostly avoided me or did not want to answer it.

My goal is give more information about ecommerce and its applications in Turkey. Most importantly how is Turkish people attitude toward internet shopping and ecommerce. To show result that Turkey is ready for jumping to internet marketing.

Key Words: internet shopping, ecommerce,


“Although there is no standard definition of the term, social commerce (also known as social business), generally refers to the delivery of e-commerce activities and transactions via the social media environment, mostly in social networks and by using Web 2.0 software. Thus, SC can be considered a subset of e-commerce that involves using social media to assist in e-commerce transactions and activities.” (Turban, 2012, p. 6)

“Ecommerce, also known as electronic commerce, is a business model which involves transactions taking place on the internet. Stores that sell their products online are ecommerce stores or businesses. For example, Amazon.com is one of the most popular online stores in the ecommerce industry. In this article you’ll learn the history of ecommerce, ecommerce statistics, platforms, popular ecommerce sites, and more.”

Day after day, the internet started to play very important role in our lives. İt is evolving so quickly as well as internet shopping and The E Commerce. Customers prefer internet shopping more and more because of its several benefits, rather than traditional shopping. It is so important to know what The E Commerce is, because it is everywhere. In addition, it changes whole perspective of marketing. (Ferreira, What Is Ecommerce? Everything You Need to Know, 2018)

In 2016, online retail sales reached to $1.915 trillion which corresponds to 8.7 percent of global retail spending (www.emarketer.com). Even though the growth rate for the global retail sales has been held back due the financial crises, the digital portion of it has been continuously growing (23.7 percent growth rate forecast for 2016). eMarketer predicts that retail e-commerce sales will reach to $4.058 trillion in 2020, making up about 14.6 percent of total retail spending that year. Total number of global internet shoppers was estimated to reach to 1.61 billion with a global turnover of 1.9 trillion US dollars in 2016. More than 41 percent of the global internet users have purchased online in 2013 and this number is predicted to go over 46 percent in 2017 with different penetration rates in different countries. (https://www.statista.com/topics/ 871/online-shopping/). (Erdem & Erdem, 2017)

The questions which we explore, in order to learn about the social commerce and its applications in Turkey is:

  • What is the Ecommerce and its applications in Turkey?
  • How willing are consumers to buy through social media?
  • What problems does Ecommerce have?
  • What is current image of internet shopping in Turkey?
  • What is the Turkish people stand on internet shopping?

Literature Review

Imagine a physical world where there are hundreds upon hundreds of branches of the same store. I have a branch in my neighborhood tailored to my needs, and you have a branch in your neighborhood tailored to yours. In the physical world this would be impossible (notwithstanding a Starbucks on every corner); however, the movement toward E-commerce— commerce in the virtual space—has produced business strategies that could never exist in the physical world. In his book Mass Customization (Pine, 1993), Joe Pine argues that companies need to shift from the old world of mass production where “standardized products, homogeneous markets, and long product life and development cycles were the rule” to the To whom correspondence should be addressed at 4-192 EE/CSci Building, 200 Union Street S.E., University of Minnesota, Minneapolis, Minnesota 55455, USA. 116 SCHAFER, KONSTAN AND RIEDL new world where “variety and customization supplant standardized products.”

Pine argues that building one product is simply not adequate anymore. At a minimum, companies need to be able to develop multiple products that meet the multiple needs of multiple consumers. While E-commerce hasn’t necessarily allowed businesses to produce more products, it has allowed them to provide consumers with more choices. Instead of tens of thousands of books in a superstore, consumers may choose among millions of books in an online store. Increasing choice, however, has also increased the amount of information that consumers must process before they are able to select which items meet their needs. To address this information overload, e-commerce stores are applying mass customization principles not to the products but to their presentation in the on-line store (Pine and Gilmore, 1999). (Schafer, 2001)

According to Joe Pine, he refers that customers need wider range of products, e business do not necessarily building more products but every neighborhood have their own needs and their own products. So, e business made it easier to reach all products from all around the neighborhoods. Furthermore, e business let consumers have more sets of options too choose and fulfill their needs by presenting on their on-line stores.

E-Commerce Statistics

  • It is estimated that, by 2020, global ecommerce sales will reach $4.058 trillion, which makes ecommerce a growing and profitable industry to be in.
  • The US expects, by 2019, to have 224 million online shoppers, making the US a large audience base to market your online store to.
  • Women tend to shop online more frequently than men. For every $10 spent online, women are spending $6 while men spend $4.
  • Millennials, ages 18-34, tend to spend approximately $2000 online each year making it the generation that does the most online shopping. (Ferreira, What Is Ecommerce? Everything You Need to Know, 2018)

Considering ecommerce statistic we found:

  • Ecommerce volume is raising dramatically over years.
  • Millennials spend approximately 2000$ per year on online shopping which shows that new generations tend to use internet to shop more than ever.
  • Women tend to spend more than men which suggest that majority of the market is women.
  • The statistics show that the biggest market in e business will be US.

E-Commerce in Turkey

The change in the Turkish Internet and online retail market up to the present, especially since the release of the first report in 2014 has been examined, and the key elements in this period have been assessed. The highlights of the second section are briefly as follows:

Internet Population: With 46 million Internet users and 58% Internet penetration, Turkey is among the world’s important players. Although lagging behind developed countries in terms of Internet penetration, Turkey is at similar levels to developing countries such as BRICs.

Online Retail Volume: According to the latest publication by TUBISAD and ETID, online retail volume, which grew by an average 34% between 2013 and 2016, reached a volume of TL 17.5 billion TL by 2016.

Online Retail Penetration: Despite the momentum captured, onlines’ share in total retail sales was 3.5% in 2016. Compared to the world average of 8.5%, Turkey still has a long way to go.

Traditional Retailers and SMEs: So far, Turkey’s e-commerce growth has been mostly triggered by pure-online players. Currently, traditional retailers, who make up for 97% of the total retail volume and more than 99% of employment, make up for only 30% of the online retail volume. For the next leap in Turkish online retail to happen, it is imperative that these traditional retailers and accelerate their online retailer and digitalization activities.

Consumer Behavior: From the consumer point of view, Only one out of three customers who use the Internet in Turkey shop online. One out of four customers who shop online state that they have had problems in the post-purchase, fulfillment and return processes. ((BCG), 2017)

“Turkey, a country with a stable growth, a fairer income distribution, possessing a global competitive power, transforming into a knowledge society, a country which has completed the harmonization process for the EU membership,” as stated in the Strategy document of the Ninth Development Plan. (Afra, 2014) (TUBISAD, 2018)

In this graph it shows that turkeys’ market size on e-commerce in huge raise. 2013 to 2017 average annual growth is 32% which shows the market attractiveness is getting higher. That graph may signals that shopping habits are shifting to internet shopping rather than traditional shopping.

Number of internet users in Turkey from 2013 to 2019 (in millions) [image: Screen%20Shot%202019-01-10%20at%208.07.37%20PM.png] (eMarketer, 2015)

it shows that internet usage of Turkish people grows importantly every year. It effects their internet shopping positively.

ISTANBUL — Turkey has caught the eye of global e-commerce players, who like the size and growth potential of its market.

Trendyol, Turkey’s largest web-based fashion retailer, announced on June 28 that Chinese e-commerce leader Alibaba Group Holding will invest in the company. The value and size of the stake purchase have not been disclosed but according to several market players, Alibaba will spend about $1 billion to buy a roughly 75% interest in Trendyol from the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development and several U.S. investment funds.

The purchase is thought to be the largest foreign investment in a Turkish startup, surpassing German food delivery service company Delivery Hero’s $589 million buyout of Turkish peer Yemeksepeti in 2015. Founded in 2010, Trendyol runs an online fashion e-commerce platform with 16 million users and 90 million visits per month.

Turkey is a relatively youthful and promising market, with a population of about 80 million, but online shopping only accounts for about 3.5% of the country’s retail sector, said Trendyol. (TAVSAN, 2018)


In this article, descriptive, survey research design is used. In the literature review it is clearly shown that we have to do a survey to see what is the behaviour of Turkish people against e commerce and internet shopping. It will be easier to understand what is the image of internet shopping from Turkish people perspective by using this method. In addition, the survey is faster, easier and cheaper than other methods.

Survey Research: It is a list of questions prepared according to a specific plan to understand the feelings, thoughts and experiences of particular people or groups on a subject. It is one of the most commonly used techniques because of its ease of use, low cost of ownership, and low visibility of many subjects in a short time, even though the survey validity and reliability are low. The survey is widely used in guidance and psychological counseling services as well as in various fields. The preparation of a questionnaire in a convenient and reliable manner in accordance with the purpose of the survey undoubtedly requires knowledge and experience in this regard. While the questionnaire is being developed, it is appropriate to make use of various sources and especially to refer to the expert opinion and take the views of other authorities.


The sample we chose randomly and the answers we received, are partly reliable source of Turkish peoples’ reaction towards new ecommerce trend. According to this, dominant age group is 18 to 30 it shows that the sample is the new generation which education level are undergraduate. The answers show that; Turkish people surfing on internet more than 3 hours, bought product through internet, think the internet is cheaper, want to buy products of known brands, after sale service is so important, the internet shopping system is good but not needs to be improved. They chose to open internet store rather than traditional store. All results indicate that new generation of Turkish people prefer internet shopping than traditional shopping, which shows marketing habit is changing swiftly to internet shopping and it will be higher demand on e-marketing. Even though, Turkey is new on this trend, it has high potential.

Payment security plays really important role on it. Turkish people don’t be effected on internet commercials or bloggers. If the payment security on internet shopping improves, they will choose to buy products on internet which show security of payments should be highly focused on through advancing on ecommerce and marketing.


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Cite this paper

Online Shopping and E-Commerce in Turkey. (2021, Nov 16). Retrieved from https://samploon.com/online-shopping-and-e-commerce-in-turkey/



How do I order online from Turkey?
Unfortunately, we do not ship to Turkey. We apologize for any inconvenience.
What do Turkish people buy online?
Turkish people buy a lot of clothes and shoes online. They also buy a lot of electronics.
What is the equivalent of Amazon in Turkey?
There is no equivalent of Amazon in Turkey.
Which online Shopping is best in Turkey?
There is no definitive answer to this question as suicide rates can vary greatly from country to country. However, some countries with high suicide rates include Japan, South Korea, and Finland.
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