Although the range of products for e-shopping is wide, fashion and technology are almost unanimously the most lucrative online categories in Central American countries. As technology evolves, e-commerce becomes a core element for the fashion industry, providing personalization and tailored results to digital shoppers. Estimates suggest that fashion-related internet purchases would generate about 429 million U.S. dollars in Panama in 2022, while these would reach as much as 310 million dollars in Costa Rica. The outlook is similar in Guatemala, aside from a notable development set to play out down the road. In terms of revenue, online food sales were forecast to surpass fashion by 2024.
The dawn of online retailers
For many companies, the COVID-19 pandemic acted as a catalyst for business digitization. From 2020 to 2021, the number of companies selling online in Guatemala doubled, while nearly half of large and medium-sized enterprises in Honduras were using e-commerce by early 2022. Online retailers in both countries primarily favored the open-source e-commerce solution WooCommerce to sell their products and services on the internet, followed by website building and hosting platform Squarespace. In Panama, WooCommerce was also the leading e-commerce platform used by e-sellers in 2021. However, Squarespace failed to rank in the top three, as Shopify and Wix each had a higher share of online retailers using their platforms.
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Research expert specializing in economy and politics