Consumer behaviorScoreboard reveals new insights into consumer conditions in the EU Single Market

Today, the Commission published its 2019 Consumer Conditions Scoreboard. Results reveal that different consumer conditions are converging across the EU and consumers are increasingly aware of their environmental footprint. Also, consumer rules enable growing trust in the markets.

Since 2008 EU Scoreboards for both consumer markets and conditions are published biennially in alternating order to show how the EU Single Market functions for consumers. Besides progress on integration of the EU retail market and e-commerce, the Conditions Scoreboard examines the areas of knowledge and trust, compliance and enforcement and complaints as well as dispute resolution. It is based on data from representative consumer and retailer surveys in the Member States, as well as Iceland and Norway.

These are the essential results:

  • A growing share of consumers takes into account the environmental impact of their purchases. With over 50 percent, most consumers in Southern and Eastern European countries considered themselves as environmentally friendly.

  • Consumer conditions decline in Western Europe, but improve in other regions and especially Southern and Eastern Member States converge towards the EU average. Nonetheless, the difference between the highest scoring (Sweden, 71 percent) and the lowest scoring country (Croatia, 53 percent) is still significant.

  • Over 70 percent of EU consumers trust retailers to respect their consumer rights and more than 70 percent of retailers find it easy to comply with consumer legislation.

  • In 2018, 60 percent of consumers shopped online and while this share increases further, it also varies strongly between countries like (Denmark (84 percent) and Romania and Bulgaria (20 percent). However, consumer trust in buying cross-border within the EU (48 percent) is significantly lower than in domestic online shopping (72 percent).

Věra Jourová, EU Commissioner for Justice, Consumers and Gender Equality, commented: “The latest figures show that over 70 percent of consumers trust retailers to respect their rights, but they also show that work to improve consumer conditions and trust must continue. And the New Deal for Consumers will indeed further strengthen the hand of consumers and authorities. I am glad to see that consumers are increasingly aware of their environmental footprint when shopping. As the Christmas season approaches, I encourage all consumers to engage with trustworthy traders, know their rights, and indeed buy responsibly.”

Source: European Commission

More information, the report and Factsheet