Italians are turning to Bitcoin as a preferred method of payment for online purchases, according to a new report.
Marketing analysis firm SEMRush claims Bitcoin, the world’s largest cryptocurrency, is the third most popular method for online payments in Italy, after PayPal and Italian prepaid cash card provider PostePay.
The data is based on figures surveyed between October 2018 and September 2019, reports Italian news source La Stampa.
Average number of times used per month in Italy
- PayPal – 1,383,000 times
- PostePay – 1,175,000
- Bitcoin – 215,800 times
- American Express – 189,000
Since digital payment platforms such as PayPal can link to credit cards, debit cards and bank accounts, the PayPal figure alone could include actual transactions made via Visa, Mastercard or other credit cards, which ranked well below Bitcoin in the survey with a monthly average of only 33,950.
The number of online payments using Bitcoin spiked in June at 368,000 times.
E-commerce in Italy is on the rise with consumers snapping up everything from luxury goods to pizza to home appliances. E-commerce sales in Europe’s fourth-largest economy topped $32 billion in 2018, up 15% since 2017. According to a report by Export.gov, Italy has adopted online shopping trends made popular in the US.
“Over the last few years, Italian physical and online shops have adopted Black Friday and Cyber Monday promotions, generally with successful public responses. In 2018 the Florence-based luxury outlet Luisaviaroma.com registered record sales in Italy, as well as in the U.K., China, and Germany. Moreover, during seasonal sales (July-September and January-March) e-commerce websites are launching competitive sales campaigns, usually offering higher discounts than those in physical stores.”
Several portals in Italy are gearing up for Black Friday on November 29, including ePRICE, Unieuro, Zalando, Zara and Ryanair. ePRICE is planning to offer Italian shoppers 50% discounts, especially on consumer electronics, its most popular category, including big discounts on items from crypto-friendly manufacturers Samsung and Huawei.
E-commerce giant Amazon will kick off its “pre-Black Friday” shopping bonanza on Monday, November 25 with most of the promotions rolling out on Friday the 29th at the stroke of midnight.