Postal sector

E-commerce and Cross-border Parcel Delivery

To help French e-commerce vendors in their international development, Arcep and the Directorate-General for Enterprise are publishing a report on their expectations and knowledge of export solutions

Paris, 1 June 2017

Arcep and the Directorate-General for Enterprise are publishing the findings of a study commissioned from the firm PMP-Logicités on cross-border parcel deliveries from France. This study examines French e-tailers expectations regarding export. It also provides a detailed snapshot of the transport and logistics solutions that are available to them.

Improving information on available transport and logistics solutions to revitalise exports and contribute to the development of micro, small and medium enterprises in France

The report stresses the polarisation that exists between, on the one hand, a small handful of websites that generate a large number of sales, such as C-discount,, etc., and the multitude of sites that make a small number of sales (95% of sites earn less than €1 million in revenue). The report also reveals the need for e-tailers to be better informed about the terms and conditions of cross-border parcel deliveries. This is especially true as the different operators, including La Poste, have updated their merchandise delivery solutions to align themselves with the needs of e-commerce.

French e-tailers lag behind their European counterparts

Online retailers in France, especially the smallest among them, make fewer cross-border deliveries than their European counterparts. They do target neighbouring countries but, for 53% of them, sales to these countries represent less than 5% of their parcel shipments. Cross-border trade thus represents a vital growth catalyst for micro, small and medium enterprises in France.

A competitive European parcel market: enabling growth for e-tailers

Representing €72 billion in revenue in 2016, e-commerce in France continues its steady growth, and sales are expected to double between now and 2025.

To sustain its development, e-commerce needs a high quality and competitive parcel delivery market, notably for cross-border trade - as emphasised by the European Commission in its Digital Single Market Strategy.

Linked documents

STUDY :  on cross-border parcel deliveries from France (1st June 2017) (in French only