Global Ecommerce Sales Hit $5.7 Trillion in 2022: Insights and Analysis

That's it kids ... another year is in the history books!

You are reading this email on January 3rd, making this the first newsletter of 2023. I always feel a little emotional when we hit milestones like this. But I am also more than a bit curious how things went for all of you — my people. I see eCommerce merchants.

So, as I promised last week, let's run through some preliminary numbers and see where everything ended up Holiday 2022-wise.

If you want, reply to this email and let me know how things went for you.

Happy Holidays,


Where Did Your 'Ol Buddy Zach Get the Numbers?

It's hard to find reliable statistics. Everyone seems to have an agenda these days and the final tally is still being added up in several categories. But I combed through the most current and accurate reports available and pulled out the following choice bits. You will find all of the sources listed below if you want to read for yourself.

Full-Year 2022

Online Sales Reached $5.7 trillion Worldwide

This represented ~20.8% of all retail sales in 2022. This is a 3% market share increase over the last two years. A big chunk of that is due to more B2B eCommerce. This trend is expected to continue, with eCommerce reaching up to 23% of all retail sales by 2025.

Fastest-growing eCommerce Markets

Latin America is still smallish, but it is growing fast — up 22.4% over last year. India is up 25.5% y/y.

The Holiday Season 2022

This gets tricky, so make sure you read "The Devil in the Details" to get the big picture.

Total Retail Sales

Total retail sales in the holiday period climbed 7.6% y/y (excluding cars).

Online Sales

Unless you already forgot the previous stats above, eCommerce grabbed additional market share. Online sales increased 10.6% over last year.

What Items Sold the Most?
  • Apparel sales were up 4.4%.
  • Department store sales were up just 1%.
  • Electronics were DOWN 5.3%.
  • Jewelry was DOWN 5.4%.

Since sales were up, how is that possible?

The Devil in the Details

Restaurants and Food were up a whopping 15.1%. Analysts think that people were VERY happy to have an in-person holiday for the first time in two years because of the lock-downs and such. So, folks spent a ton more eating and ... yes, drinking together.

The numbers above come from a few sources, and different sources use different methodologies and define the "holiday season" is slightly different ways. But overall, I think that the information is "directionally accurate," which install pretty good.

What About the Inflation Grinch?

What all the sources seem to gloss over or "conveniently forget" is the impact of inflation. Seems like an important thing to mention, don't you think? Depending you who you are asking, the domestic inflation rate here in the US for the entire year of 2022 is going to com in anywhere from 7.1% to 7.7%. And total retails sales for the season — as we see above — is coming in at 7.6%. Draw your own conclusions, but that suggests that our customers bought about the same amount of stuff, but just paid more for it on average.

Or something like that.

Now my head hurts. Math is hard and stuff.


I hope that was interesting. It's good to kind of understand how you did compared to your peers.

So, Happy New Year again. Next week, back to normal business.

Zach's Sources

Mastercard Spending Pulse

They have become a data source for more than just credit card sales. They harvest comprehensive spending data and sell it to big companies.

Mastercard Spending Pulse Holiday Press Release

Seems legit to me.

Shopify Global eCommerce Explained

The writing is a bit self-serving, but let's give them credit where credit id due.

Inflation Stuff

Like I said, the estimates vary. But I checked Statista, US Inflation Calculator, and Trading Economics. I tried to check the Federal Reserve, but they are not publishing any estimates yet ... probably because they hosed things up to begin with.


I normally get interesting stats from Adobe because they have a lot of high-end eCommerce action. But they haven't included December in their stats yet. But Time, Yahoo! Finance, and Forbes were all citing the Mastercard numbers.

Want to Update Your Shopify Site for 2023?
2023 is a New Year, so let's fix up that old Shopify site. If you need help making Shopify website tweaks or fixing those little nagging things on your Shopify store, let’s get stuff done. Tell us what you want to do, get a quote, and get it done.


Back to blog