Dutch SEO and Internet Marketing

The Dutch online retail market is amongst Western Europe’s largest, with the Netherlands also ranked as one of Europe’s top-5 e-commerce nations. With rapidly rising mobile telephony and internet broadband usage, offshore Dutch B2C internet retailing represents a significant future growth opportunity, offering the convenience of faster, cheaper and secure transactions at minimal delivery times. Effective Dutch website translation, along with multilingual SEO and other online marketing strategies, can improve your presence in the Dutch internet market.

Quick Summary:

Number of Dutch internet users (2004 latest): 10.81 million

Dutch broadband access: 189.8 (per 1000)

Dutch mobile phone users (latest data 2005): 15.8 million

Most popular local Dutch search engine: http://ilse.nl/

Most popular Dutch website types: News, Banking and Finance.

Credit card penetration in Netherlands: 28%

Dutch B2C e-commerce expenditure (2006): US $ 3.7 billion

A prosperous and open economy, Netherlands depends significantly on foreign trade. Characterized by stable industrial relations and moderate unemployment and inflation levels, Netherlands is also an important European transportation hub. Netherlands’s GDP at current prices for 2006 stands at US $ 662.8 billion, having experienced a growth of 5.2% over 2005 Netherlands estimates, according to the IMF’s World Economic Outlook Database dated September 2006.Nielsen Net Ratings Data has estimated the total number of Dutch internet users in June 2004 at10.81 million with 65.9% penetration, having increased by 177% over 2000 estimates for the same. The World Bank-ICT database has also estimated Netherlands’s per capita internet usage to be at 524 (per 1000) in 2004, having increased from 440(per 1000) in 2000.


* Source: Nielsen Net Ratings, June 2004 data

Netherlands’s broadband access per capita is also increasing rapidly, standing at 189.8(per 1000) in 2004, having risen from a mere 16.3(per 1000) in 2000, according to the World Bank-ICT database. The Netherlands has approximately 2.5 million broadband subscribers, as per latest 2006 estimates. The World Bank-ICT database has also estimated that Netherlands’s per capita personal computer usage was at 524(per 1,000) in 2004, having grown by 32.3% over 2000 estimates. Similarly, Netherlands’s mainline and mobile phone usage also stood at 588 and 992 (per 1000) respectively in 2004. 

The most popular Dutch search engines are http://www.eerstekeuze.nl, http://www.goudengids.nl, http://www.google.nl, http://www.lycos.nl, http://nl.altavista.com, http://www.eli.nl, http://www.nl-menu.nl and http://ilse.nl. EIAA’s ‘Europe Online’ Report for August 2006 also states that Netherlands’s most frequently visited websites are those on news, banking and finance.

Forrester Research 2004 data has estimated Netherlands’s credit card penetration rate at 28% in 2004,with internet banking devices and direct debit being the two alternative methods of online payment. According to Euromonitor International, the amount of new credit granted on Dutch credit cards reached € 2.9 billion (US $ 3.6 billion) in 2004, with credit cards being increasingly accepted in the retail sector in Netherlands, as merchants' fees go down and Dutch consumer acceptance levels increase. 

Euromonitor International goes on to highlight that with nearly € 5 billion (US $ 6.2 billion) worth of internet transactions in 2004, the Dutch rank among the biggest e-shoppers in Western Europe. For example, the number of credit card transactions via e-commerce, processed by Interpay nearly doubled in 2004. EIAA’s August 2006 ‘Europe Online’ Report has also stated that the average Dutch internet shopper spends approximately € 612 (US $ 761.3) and buys 3 items online over a six month period.

A Forrester Research Inc. September 2006 report also forecasts that by 2006 end, there would be more than € 3 billion (US $ 3.7 billion) worth of Dutch online B2C retail sales. In five years time, i.e. by 2011, overall online sales in the Netherlands would reach an estimated € 12 billion (US $ 14.9 billion), ensuring that Netherlands remains one of Europe’s top five e-commerce nations, behind Italy, but ahead of Spain. By 2011, more than 50% of the Dutch adult population would purchase holidays, clothes, and electronics online. Thus, offshore internet retailing is expected to be a prime growth driver for future Dutch online retail sales, assuring secure and convenient financial card transactions, faster purchases and lower product prices, as compared to the traditional ‘brick-and-mortar’ stores.

Reference Sources/Further Readings:

1. IMF World Economic Outlook Database

2. The World Bank Group - ICT Database

3. http://en.wikipedia.org

4. ITU (International Telecommunication Union)

5. http://www.cia.gov - The World Factbook

6. http://www.high-search-engine-ranking.com

7. http://www.internetworldstats.com

8. Nielsen Net Ratings

9. EIAA (Europe Interactive Online Association) Europe Online Report, August 2006

10. http://www.devinix.com

11. Forrester Research Inc.

12. http://www.euromonitor.com