Survey shows Ireland is ahead of its EU counterparts when it comes to businesses selling their goods and services online but Clune says we could go further to develop new markets for our goods and services.

Ireland South MEP Deirdre Clune has highlighted a Eurostat survey that shows that just 20% of EU businesses sell their products or services online. Ireland is ahead of its EU neighbours when it comes to selling online with 30% of business here selling their wares online.

Eurostat research shows that among internet users, 66% were e-shoppers, meaning they had ordered goods or services online in 2016, compared with 50% in 2007.

Clune has welcomed the fact that Ireland ranks high amongst EU businesses who are selling online but says there are online markets and opportunities that our businesses could be exploring and selling to – if they developed a greater online presence.

“Irish companies of all shapes and sizes should be looking at developing an online presence. In particular, those in the area of tourism – an industry which has largely moved online. People are buying goods and services on their smartphones and tablets and business must be conscious of the fact that the market is moving online.

“It is not just about having a static website anymore. Small B&Bs, restaurants, retailers and tourism providers need a complete online strategy that includes social media, promotions, online bookings, online sales and linkages to other related apps and sites.

“Domestically, Irish consumers are now spending more than seven billion euro online every year. This figure is growing, and it’s growing fast.

“Help is available for Irish businesses who want to develop their online presence. Through their local enterprise office, small businesses can apply for financial assistance of up to €2,500 to develop their online trading capability. The scheme gives priority to businesses who aim to extend their customer base, start exporting, and create jobs. More information can be found at