According to Luminor’s statistics, Estonians have jumped at the chance of using online shopping, with a comparison between the Baltic States showing that growth in Estonia has been much more rapid. However, in terms of using postal services, Lithuania has posted the highest growth and Estonia the most modest.
Luminor’s private client statistics show that online shopping has increased in Estonia by an enormous amount – almost 70 % – since the start of the year. The respective figures in Latvia and Lithuania are just 12 % and 23 %, respectively. On the other hand, Lithuania has shown a 145 % rise in the use of postal services (i.e. the volume of parcels sent and received) by private clients. The same figures for Latvia and Estonia were 66 % and just 35 %, respectively.
According to Ele Reiljan, Head of Customer Offering at Luminor, this does not mean that Estonia has fallen behind its neighbours in terms of using postal services, since online shopping and mail and courier services go hand in hand. “Since a lot of online stores immediately add shipping costs to the price of their goods and the same invoice is used to pay for both the goods and postage, they’re simply not reflected separately in the statistics,” she explained.
“At the same time, the numbers indicate that Latvians and Lithuanians are keener on using postal services to send other items – be it books borrowed from friends or jars of jam sent by grandparents to parcel terminals. Smaller shops and residents in these countries are also more active in terms of selling person-to-person, which is conducted via a mail service like a parcel terminal.”
Additionally, all three Baltic States have seen a considerable increase in shopping at hardware stores and garden centres compared to the start of the year: 88 % in Estonia, 73 % in Lithuania and 69 % in Latvia. “The reason is simple,” Reiljan explained: “these stores remained open, unlike those in shopping centres, and seasonality is also a contributing factor.”
People have almost entirely stopped spending on travel and going out in all three countries, with the drop amounting to almost 95 % across the board. People are also spending considerably less in clothing stores, where turnover is down by 71 % in Estonia, 63 % in Lithuania and 62 % in Latvia.