T-Index 2016: the rankings for online markets

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Which markets offer the greatest potential for online sales?


T-Index 2016 is based on a new calculation method that uses HFCE (household final consumption expenditure) instead of GDP. See more details below.

T-Index is a statistical index ranking the markets according to their potential for online sales. It estimates the market share of each country in relation to global e-commerce, by combining the number of Internet users by country with their estimated spending amount per capita.

The study was conducted by TRANSLATED – the leading professional online translation agency – in order to guide business clients in their selection of markets and languages for an internationalization project and to help them get the best possible return on investment (ROI) from it.

The underlying criteria for the study are described below.

Which markets offer the greatest potential for online sales?

Download the press release and get an overview of the study in this infographic.


2016 data | NEW!

How to interpret the data

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Trend* Country T-Index
2016
Projection
2020
Languages Internet population Internet
penetration rate
HFCE p.c. of Int. pop.**
Download data in CSV format
(!) Restricted Internet access
* The arrows and dash indicate the country's projected performance in the 2020 rankings.
** HFCE per capita of the Internet population
*** The United Kingdom consists of four countries: England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland (!) The majority of the population has limited access to the Internet.
1
USA 29.9% 20.6% 1 278,553,524 87.4% $41,217
2
China (!) 8.0% 12.7% 1 672,585,110 49.3% $4,551
3
Japan 7.0% 6.3% 1 115,155,984 90.6% $23,368
4
Germany 5.2% 3.6% 1 69,718,664 86.2% $28,551
Localizing your website for these 4 markets gives you access to 50% of the worldwide online sales potential.
5
UK *** 4.9% 2.7% 1 59,097,955 91.6% $31,706
6
France 3.8% 3.7% 1 55,448,304 83.8% $26,517
7
Brazil 3.3% 5.1% 1 118,700,869 57.6% $10,820
8
Italy 2.8% 2.5% 1 38,004,025 62.0% $28,472
9
Canada 2.5% 2.4% 2 30,962,813 87.1% $30,670
10
Russia 2.3% 3.9% 1 101,421,560 70.5% $8,794
11
Australia 2.0% 2.5% 1 19,863,766 84.6% $38,373
12
Spain 1.9% 1.5% 2 35,355,666 76.2% $20,944
13
South Korea 1.8% 1.2% 1 42,522,521 84.3% $15,874
14
Mexico 1.8% 2.0% 1 55,658,771 44.4% $12,115
15
India 1.3% 1.9% 2 233,152,478 18.0% $2,101
16
Turkey 1.1% 1.5% 1 38,755,870 51.0% $10,917
17
Netherlands 0.99% 0.58% 1 15,703,042 93.2% $24,255
Localizing your website for these 17 markets gives you access to 80% of the worldwide online sales potential.
18
Switzerland 0.94% 0.95% 3 7,125,498 87.0% $50,509
19
Argentina 0.79% 1.4% 1 27,808,077 64.7% $10,918
20
Nigeria 0.76% 1.2% 1 75,746,751 42.7% $3,857
21
Poland 0.71% 0.80% 1 25,305,022 66.6% $10,828
22
Belgium 0.67% 0.64% 2 9,541,426 85.0% $26,929
23
Sweden 0.67% 0.57% 1 8,964,776 92.5% $28,498
24
Austria 0.57% 0.49% 1 6,912,939 81.0% $31,517
25
Saudi Arabia (!) 0.54% 0.81% 1 19,674,729 63.7% $10,435
26
Norway 0.52% 0.50% 1 4,946,425 96.3% $40,642
27
Colombia 0.51% 0.83% 1 25,123,935 52.6% $7,820
28
Venezuela 0.50% 0.86% 1 17,495,481 57.0% $11,028
29
Indonesia 0.50% 0.84% 1 43,613,549 17.1% $4,363
30
South Africa 0.49% 0.91% 4 26,460,956 49.0% $7,137
31
United Arab Emirates 0.48% 0.51% 1 8,213,870 90.4% $22,654
32
Hong Kong 0.46% 0.46% 1 5,399,412 74.6% $32,400
33
Denmark 0.43% 0.28% 1 5,413,418 96.0% $30,199
Localizing your website for these 33 markets gives you access to 90% of the worldwide online sales potential.
34
Malaysia 0.42% 0.54% 2 20,183,848 67.5% $7,905
35
Israel 0.41% 0.56% 1 5,869,832 71.5% $26,564
36
Chile 0.40% 0.55% 1 12,851,275 72.3% $11,890
37
Philippines 0.38% 0.67% 2 39,348,146 39.7% $3,699
38
Finland 0.38% 0.32% 1 5,047,270 92.4% $28,794
39
Iran (!) 0.37% 0.65% 1 30,749,524 39.4% $4,610
40
Greece 0.37% 0.34% 1 6,926,387 63.2% $20,272
41
Thailand 0.35% 0.45% 1 23,629,594 34.9% $5,603
42
Portugal 0.33% 0.29% 1 6,715,676 64.6% $19,023
43
Egypt 0.33% 0.51% 1 28,396,755 31.7% $4,398
44
New Zealand 0.28% 0.27% 1 3,855,794 85.5% $27,778
45
Singapore 0.28% 0.34% 2 4,485,154 82.0% $23,750
46
Ireland 0.27% 0.19% 2 3,675,876 79.7% $27,834
47
Peru 0.24% 0.35% 1 12,451,205 40.2% $7,372
48
Czech Republic 0.23% 0.29% 1 8,377,972 79.7% $10,745
49
Romania 0.23% 0.28% 1 10,767,866 54.1% $8,359
50
Vietnam (!) 0.23% 0.34% 1 43,831,663 48.3% $2,010
51
Kazakhstan 0.19% 0.39% 2 9,489,993 54.9% $7,828
52
Puerto Rico 0.16% 0.19% 1 2,795,427 78.8% $22,334
53
Hungary 0.16% 0.14% 1 7,507,692 76.1% $8,310
54
Ukraine 0.15% 0.32% 2 19,687,499 43.4% $2,855
55
Pakistan 0.14% 0.17% 2 25,536,111 13.8% $2,097
56
Morocco 0.14% 0.20% 2 19,267,244 56.8% $2,778
57
Slovakia 0.14% 0.14% 1 4,333,721 80.0% $11,955
58
Ecuador 0.12% 0.19% 1 6,838,254 43.0% $6,550
59
Kuwait 0.11% 0.14% 1 2,953,706 78.7% $14,511
60
Kenya 0.097% 0.15% 1 19,470,795 43.4% $1,907
61
Dominican Rep 0.096% 0.14% 1 5,159,267 49.6% $7,148
62
Lebanon 0.091% 0.15% 1 3,396,440 74.7% $10,321
63
Iraq 0.089% 0.12% 1 3,933,793 11.3% $8,641
64
Sri Lanka (!) 0.087% 0.14% 1 5,324,862 25.8% $6,256
65
Uruguay 0.086% 0.13% 1 2,101,635 61.5% $15,711
66
Guatemala 0.079% 0.11% 1 3,747,626 23.4% $8,137
67
Qatar 0.079% 0.12% 1 1,987,222 91.5% $15,229
68
Algeria 0.078% 0.11% 2 7,043,222 18.1% $4,255
69
Croatia 0.076% 0.079% 1 2,906,263 68.6% $10,089
70
Belarus 0.076% 0.11% 2 5,589,194 59.0% $5,238
71
Sudan (!) 0.073% 0.13% 1 9,695,908 24.6% $2,886
72
Bulgaria 0.072% 0.095% 1 4,008,563 55.5% $6,938
73
Syria (!) 0.071% 0.12% 1 6,224,126 28.1% $4,374
74
Lithuania 0.070% 0.076% 1 2,112,921 72.1% $12,753
75
Costa Rica 0.068% 0.093% 1 2,350,733 49.4% $11,116
76
Bangladesh 0.065% 0.085% 1 15,271,441 9.6% $1,633
77
Azerbaijan (!) 0.064% 0.11% 1 5,818,072 61.0% $4,250
78
Serbia 0.063% 0.077% 1 3,814,244 53.5% $6,376
79
Angola 0.063% 0.10% 1 5,150,772 21.3% $4,671
80
Cuba (!) 0.062% 0.083% 1 3,413,733 30.0% $7,000
81
Tunisia 0.062% 0.095% 2 5,076,032 46.2% $4,682
82
Slovenia 0.058% 0.058% 1 1,476,342 71.6% $15,081
83
Oman 0.058% 0.097% 1 2,974,559 70.2% $7,473
84
Luxembourg 0.052% 0.044% 1 526,435 94.7% $37,745
85
Panama 0.050% 0.082% 1 1,737,297 44.9% $11,121
86
Jordan 0.050% 0.075% 1 2,907,080 44.0% $6,544
87
Latvia 0.045% 0.043% 1 1,509,283 75.8% $11,559
88
Uzbekistan (!) 0.045% 0.071% 1 13,394,978 43.5% $1,277
89
Yemen (!) 0.044% 0.062% 1 5,904,419 22.6% $2,842
90
Paraguay 0.041% 0.066% 1 2,817,583 43.0% $5,642
91
Libya 0.040% 0.036% 1 1,111,596 17.8% $13,785
92
Bolivia 0.039% 0.064% 1 4,121,248 39.0% $3,670
93
Trinidad & Tobago 0.039% 0.055% 1 881,768 65.1% $17,115
94
Cyprus 0.037% 0.042% 1 799,831 69.3% $17,722
95
El Salvador 0.036% 0.057% 1 1,813,989 29.7% $7,660
96
Bahrain (!) 0.035% 0.052% 1 1,239,356 91.0% $10,871
97
Estonia 0.033% 0.029% 1 1,106,615 84.2% $11,500
98
Bosnia-Herzegovina 0.033% 0.041% 1 2,321,073 60.8% $5,404
99
Ghana 0.031% 0.045% 1 5,062,667 18.9% $2,332
100
Zambia 0.025% 0.040% 1 2,726,081 17.3% $3,497
101
Macau 0.025% 0.032% 1 403,268 69.8% $23,472
102
West Bank And Gaza 0.024% 0.034% 1 2,304,956 53.7% $4,004
103
Turkmenistan (!) 0.024% 0.026% 1 647,477 12.2% $14,247
104
Iceland 0.023% 0.000001% 1 321,561 98.2% $27,629
105
Georgia 0.023% 0.040% 1 2,202,505 48.9% $3,936
106
Honduras 0.023% 0.034% 1 1,519,089 19.1% $5,693
107
Jamaica 0.022% 0.029% 1 1,102,107 40.5% $7,767
108
Uganda 0.022% 0.037% 1 6,691,364 17.7% $1,277
109
Albania 0.021% 0.037% 1 1,739,579 60.1% $4,702
110
Cote D'Ivoire 0.020% 0.022% 1 3,234,938 14.6% $2,412
111
Macedonia 0.018% 0.021% 1 1,412,670 68.1% $4,979
112
Armenia 0.017% 0.031% 1 1,391,849 46.3% $4,810
113
Cameroon 0.017% 0.020% 1 2,505,032 11.0% $2,658
114
Mauritius 0.016% 0.023% 1 522,531 41.4% $11,846
115
Zimbabwe 0.015% 0.023% 1 3,032,401 19.9% $1,890
116
Bahamas 0.015% 0.016% 1 294,645 76.9% $19,217
117
Malta 0.014% 0.013% 1 312,732 73.2% $16,991
118
Senegal 0.013% 0.015% 1 2,597,043 17.7% $1,936
119
Nepal 0.013% 0.021% 1 4,350,177 15.4% $1,129
120
Moldova 0.012% 0.020% 1 1,657,282 46.6% $2,854
121
Botswana 0.012% 0.017% 1 410,688 18.5% $11,229
122
Nicaragua 0.012% 0.018% 1 1,058,449 17.6% $4,192
123
Namibia 0.011% 0.018% 1 356,584 14.8% $11,540
124
Mongolia 0.0091% 0.013% 1 785,665 27.0% $4,429
125
Tanzania 0.0090% 0.014% 1 2,518,579 4.9% $1,366
126
Kyrgyzstan 0.0089% 0.012% 1 1,651,079 28.3% $2,070
127
Barbados 0.0081% 0.0059% 1 217,267 76.7% $14,376
128
Myanmar 0.0081% 0.010% 1 1,122,180 2.1% $2,758
129
Montenegro 0.0078% 0.010% 1 379,298 61.0% $7,865
130
Tajikistan 0.0075% 0.014% 1 1,450,942 17.5% $1,992
131
Papua New Guinea 0.0070% 0.0082% 1 700,084 9.4% $3,855
132
Laos (!) 0.0064% 0.010% 1 953,894 14.3% $2,595
133
Ethiopia 0.0061% 0.0085% 1 2,811,803 2.9% $839
134
Afghanistan 0.0061% 0.011% 1 2,020,998 6.4% $1,166
135
Fiji 0.0061% 0.0091% 1 370,536 41.8% $6,349
136
Cambodia 0.0061% 0.0083% 1 1,379,532 9.0% $1,699
137
Brunei Darussalem 0.0061% 0.0079% 1 287,042 68.8% $8,120
138
Suriname 0.0058% 0.010% 1 215,730 40.1% $10,227
139
Haiti 0.0057% 0.0068% 1 1,205,211 11.4% $1,803
140
Monaco 0.0051% 0.0037% 1 34,764 92.4% $56,546
141
Guyana 0.0050% 0.0081% 1 285,314 37.3% $6,690
142
Liechtenstein 0.0049% 0.0045% 1 35,500 95.2% $53,272
143
Swaziland 0.0049% 0.011% 1 343,929 27.1% $5,433
144
Andorra 0.0047% 0.0033% 1 69,802 95.9% $25,785
145
Rwanda (!) 0.0046% 0.0078% 1 1,202,204 10.6% $1,466
146
Dem Rep Of The Congo 0.0045% 0.0059% 1 2,246,311 3.0% $768
147
Mozambique 0.0044% 0.0077% 1 1,616,647 5.9% $1,039
148
Burkina Faso 0.0039% 0.0058% 1 1,653,385 9.4% $897
149
Gabon 0.0039% 0.0050% 1 165,561 9.8% $8,950
150
Maldives 0.0037% 0.0059% 1 197,613 49.3% $7,155
151
Faroe Islands 0.0035% 0.0025% 1 45,646 94.7% $29,397
152
Equatorial Guinea (!) 0.0030% 0.0054% 1 154,819 18.9% $7,313
153
Mali 0.0028% 0.0032% 1 1,196,022 7.0% $914
154
Congo 0.0025% 0.0043% 1 320,303 7.1% $3,043
155
Cape Verde 0.0025% 0.0043% 1 206,899 40.3% $4,622
156
Belize 0.0024% 0.0024% 1 136,110 38.7% $6,864
157
Benin 0.0023% 0.0035% 1 561,720 5.3% $1,559
158
Madagascar 0.0021% 0.0031% 1 872,153 3.7% $927
159
Saint Lucia 0.0021% 0.0022% 1 93,659 51.0% $8,536
160
Antigua & Barbuda 0.0020% 0.0019% 1 58,176 64.0% $13,093
161
Mauritania 0.0019% 0.0023% 1 424,750 10.7% $1,690
162
San Marino 0.0017% 0.0010% 1 15,671 49.6% $41,397
163
Greenland 0.0017% 0.000044% 1 37,549 66.7% $17,123
164
Seychelles 0.0015% 0.0014% 1 49,662 54.3% $11,964
165
Chad 0.0015% 0.0024% 1 339,676 2.5% $1,705
166
Togo 0.0015% 0.0018% 1 405,564 5.7% $1,412
167
Bhutan 0.0015% 0.0025% 1 262,933 34.4% $2,122
168
St Vincent & Grenadines 0.0014% 0.0021% 1 61,767 56.5% $8,596
169
Lesotho 0.0013% 0.0015% 1 232,012 11.0% $2,213
170
Grenada 0.0013% 0.0013% 1 39,753 37.4% $12,685
171
Malawi 0.0013% 0.0021% 1 973,333 5.8% $516
172
St Kitts & Nevis 0.0011% 0.0013% 1 35,933 65.4% $11,382
173
Dominica 0.00090% 0.00084% 1 45,474 62.9% $7,636
174
Djibouti (!) 0.00089% 0.0012% 1 93,838 10.7% $3,629
175
Liberia 0.00086% 0.0011% 1 237,854 5.4% $1,380
176
Samoa 0.00085% 0.0011% 1 40,671 21.2% $7,978
177
Gambia 0.00080% 0.0011% 1 300,028 15.6% $1,018
178
Somalia (!) 0.00074% 0.00086% 1 171,436 1.6% $1,646
179
Tonga 0.00070% 0.0011% 1 42,234 40.0% $6,372
180
Guinea 0.00059% 0.00091% 1 211,139 1.7% $1,064
181
Central African Rep 0.00058% 0.00094% 1 193,614 4.0% $1,157
182
Niger 0.00055% 0.00086% 1 372,718 2.0% $564
183
Vanuatu 0.00054% 0.00063% 1 48,670 18.8% $4,284
184
Solomon Islands 0.00051% 0.00084% 1 51,495 9.0% $3,796
185
Eritrea (!) 0.00048% 0.00056% 1 50,593 1.0% $3,637
186
Sierra Leone 0.00042% 0.00059% 1 132,628 2.1% $1,209
187
Comoros 0.00035% 0.00054% 1 53,745 7.0% $2,492
188
Micronesia 0.00029% 0.00038% 1 30,849 29.6% $3,634
189
Sao Tome And Principe 0.00028% 0.00031% 1 45,486 24.4% $2,374
190
Guinea Bissau 0.00023% 0.00028% 1 59,777 3.3% $1,464
191
Burundi 0.00018% 0.00025% 1 149,273 1.4% $471
192
Marshall Islands 0.00013% 0.00018% 1 8,887 16.8% $5,658
193
East Timor 0.000083% 0.00012% 1 13,818 1.1% $2,314
194
Kiribati 0.000081% 0.00012% 1 13,533 12.3% $2,294
195
Tuvalu 0.000054% 0.000018% 1 3,660 37.0% $5,662

T-Index Map 2016

T-Index is a percentage value that indicates the Internet market share held by each country.
The higher the T-Index, the higher the online sales potential of a country.

Internet Freedom Map

In certain countries, translating your website content may not be enough to transform local Internet users into potential customers. The map above shows the countries that currently impose restrictions on Internet access.
Source : Reporters Without Borders

Learn more about T-Index


T-Index has been developed to help companies aiming at international expansion to select their target markets and to decide on the target languages for the translation of their website(s).

The United States, with a T-Index value of 29.9%, is the market with the highest potential for online sales in 2016, with more than 278 million Internet users, each with an average HFCE per capita of $41,217.

It is important to fully understand the local market and country before localizing your website for the United States. Is this market genuinely accessible for your company?

Have you considered the following?

Example

A UK-based company specializing in the sale of winter sports merchandise has a website in English and wishes to translate it into another European language, to reach new customers online. After conducting market research, the marketing manager concludes that their products would be highly likely to be successful in Germany, Sweden and Norway. By accessing T-Index, it quickly becomes clear that Germany, with a 5.2% market share, is the market with the greatest potential for online sales, given its 69,718,664 Internet users with an average HFCE per capita of $28,551.
T-Index has therefore acted as a deciding factor in the choice of German as a new language for the site.

Projection of the top countries leading up to 2020 | NEW!


News & Forecasts


The United States, ranked first with a T-Index of 29.9%, is way ahead of China, ranked second with 8.0%. The 21.9 point gap between the leaders of the rankings can be explained by the huge difference in the average spending amount between the North-American Internet population ($41,217) and the Chinese Internet population ($4,551), although China has nearly three times more Internet users than the USA, making it the first country in terms of Internet users in the world.

According to the T-Index projection up to 2020, China should quickly catch up with the United States, with a market share equal to 12.7% in 2020 versus 20.6% for the United States.

In order to calculate a projection for the time leading up to 2020, we have extrapolated a line between the 2005 and 2014 data points, using simple linear regression*. The projection assumes a linear growth trend for all countries.

Japan ranks third with a market share of 7%, while the leading European nations Germany, the United Kingdom, France and Italy are respectively in the 4th, 5th, 6th and 8th places.

Brazil ranks seventh with a market share of 3.3% and is way ahead of all the other South American countries. From 2010 to 2014, the number of Internet users in Brazil increased by 47% to 118 million while their average spending per capita decreased by 14.9% to USD 10,820. Argentina and Colombia complete the podium for the South America region, with respective market shares of 0.79% and 0.51%.

Brazil is expected to take fourth place starting in 2017 with an estimated rise in market share of 34.1% (3.3% in 2014 versus 4.5% in 2017) and thus end up ahead of Germany, France and the UK. In 2020, it should even reach a market share of 5.1%, maintaining fourth place.

Canada and Russia close the top 10 for 2016 with T-Index values respectively of 2.5% and 2.3%. While Canada should drop down to 11th place in the 2020 ranking, Russia should display a surprising performance, jumping from 10th to 5th place with a market share equal to 3.9% in 2020, versus 2.3% in 2016. From 2010 to 2014, the number of Internet users in Russia increased by 65.1% to 101 million while their average spending per capita decreased by 4.1% to USD 8,794.

India, the world’s second most populous country, ranks 15th in 2016 with a T-Index of 1.3%. With a low internet penetration rate (18%) and a fast-growing consumption spending per capita (+22.2% from 2010 to 2014), India has all the characteristics of an e-commerce growth spot. According to the projections, it should take 13th place in 2020, ahead of Spain and South Korea.

Among the emerging countries to show the strongest growth in market share between 2014 and 2020 are Ukraine (+118%), South Africa (+84.2%), Argentina (+77.8%), Iran (+76.5%) and the Philippines (+76.3%).

*See Wikipedia for further information.

The Study

Assumptions & Method

Please note that T-Index 2016 is based on a new calculation method that uses HFCE instead of GDP. HFCE is the market value of all goods and services purchased by households in each country. This change in variable in the T-Index calculation gives a much more realistic overview of each country’s real spending potential for online sales as it considers a country's household expenditure amount (HFCE) instead of a country's overall output value of goods and services (GDP).

T-Index has been developed to help companies aiming at international expansion to select their target markets and to decide on the target languages for the translation of their website(s).

Each country has been classified according to the language most commonly used by the local population to browse and make purchases on the Web. For reasons of statistical significance, the coexistence of multiple languages ​​within the same country was only taken into account where the T-index value of the country exceeded 0.1%. In the latter case, only languages ​​used on a daily basis on the Internet by more than 15% of the population were considered, except in cases where the minority languages ​​in question (used on the Internet by less than 15% of the population) are also national official languages. For example, Switzerland, with a T-Index of 0.94%, has been evaluated in three different language markets: German, French and Italian. All three of these languages are actually used on a daily basis by the Swiss people to browse and make purchases on the Web. While French and German are both used by more than 15% of the population, Italian is used by only 7% of Internet users. However, Italian is a nationally recognized official language in Switzerland, hence its inclusion in T-Index.

The T-Index study only includes languages used for browsing the Web. A number of languages ​​are either not at all or very scarcely represented on the Internet today. Indeed, in many countries, the language ​​spoken in daily life by the majority of the population cannot be found online, as with Kinyarwanda in Rwanda. This is often due to a low Internet penetration rate, which does not enable local people to access the Web to create content in their native language. In Rwanda, the 10.6% of the total population who have Internet access browse the Web in English, given that little or no content has been created by and for Rwandans in their national language. This is why T-Index includes Rwanda in the English language market.

Languages with international variants have been grouped into their respective standard language. For example, UK and US English have both been classified as English.

Dependent territories (e.g. Puerto Rico) have been evaluated according to their respective governing state, provided they share the same language. If they do not share the same language, as is the case with Puerto Rico and the United States, they are included as separate entries based on the language market to which they belong.

The T-Index study does not cover all countries. The countries included in the study are those for which it was possible to find data on the number of Internet users. Without this data, the evaluation would have been impossible. The following 10 countries present in the previous versions of T-Index are not included in this new version because no Internet user data was available: Cook Islands, Guernsey, Jersey, Kosovo, Nauru, Niue, Palau, Taiwan, Vatican City State and North Korea. However, West Bank and Gaza has been included in the new 2016 rankings.

In order to determine the HFCE per capita of the Internet population, we assumed that the Internet users in each country belong to the richest segment of the country’s population. We made this assumption considering that a certain minimum of income is necessary in most countries to have an Internet subscription and to be able to take part in e-commerce activity.

Firstly, we gathered information about the number of Internet users, HFCE and the total population, from which we determined both the Internet penetration rate* and HFCE per capita for each country. We then analyzed each country's internet penetration rate and income distribution, to determine the proportion of HFCE theoretically spent by Internet users. Finally, in order to obtain the "HFCE per capita of the Internet population", we made the following calculation: (country's total population x country's HFCE per capita x percentage of HFCE theoretically spent by Internet users)/number of Internet users.

For countries where income distribution data was not available, we calculated the average income distribution for all countries and used this estimate.

Notes

T-Index is a tool to support decision-making for companies faced with a choice of markets and languages ​​when localizing their website(s). It gives an overview of the potential of each online market. Nevertheless, factors other than the absolute size of each market alone must be taken into account when making internationalization decisions. For example, localizing your website for the Chinese market does not make sense if your company does not have the logistics capacity to distribute your products in China. Moreover, translation is the first step towards attracting new customers, although other key aspects, such as the quality of your products/services or the user-friendliness of your website, must also be optimized, to transform your visitors into potential buyers.

Example

In Japan, the number of Internet users is 115,155,984, out of a total population of 127,131,800. The Internet penetration rate is therefore 90.6%. In 2014, the HFCE per capita of Japan was $21,931. According to income distribution by quintiles, we estimate that 90.6% of the richest people in Japan spend 96.5% of the country's total consumption expenditure. To obtain the "HFCE per capita of the Internet population", we then made a simple calculation:

(total population x HFCE per capita x % of expenditure spent by Internet users) / number of Internet users

Applied to Japan: (127,131,800 x 21,931 x 96.5%) / 115,155,984
The estimated HFCE per capita of the Internet population in Japan is thus $23,368.

To obtain the T-Index value, we multiply the number of Internet users by the average HFCE per capita of the Internet population. For Japan: 115,155,984 x $23,368. Finally, to obtain a percentage value for each country, we divided each country's T-Index value by the sum of the T-Index values of all countries. This explains how we obtain a T-Index for Japan of 7%.

*The Internet penetration rate is the percentage of Internet users in a given country.

Sources

Please note that our information sources have been changed for T-Index 2016. The new sole source for both Internet users and total population figures is the World Bank database, which features more reliable statistics than the original Internet World Stats website and CIA World Factbook used as references for previous years.

The number of Internet users for each country is taken from the World Bank report “Internet users (per 100 people)”. The statistics were up-to-date as 2014. To change the percentage figures into whole figures, we combined the figures of this report with the ones from the total population report of the World Bank.

To assign each country to a language market, we studied the languages ​​most commonly used for navigation and shopping on the Web in each country. Our worldwide network of freelance translators has also contributed to the project, helping to make it a reliable tool that reflects the reality of each country.

The total population of each country is taken from the World Bank. The statistics were up-to-date as of 2014.

Data on HFCE (household final consumption expenditure) is taken from the World Bank. Data was up-to-date as of 2014 and in current U.S. dollars. Please note that currency exchange rate fluctuations (national currencies versus U.S. dollars) have an impact on the HFCE values expressed in current U.S. dollars, and consequently on the current and estimated T-Index values. We chose to use HFCE values expressed in current US dollars instead of HFCE values expressed in current international dollars using purchasing power parity (PPP) rates because our study focuses on global ecommerce opportunities, which are assessed in part according to the currency exchange rate fluctuations between countries. For countries or territories whose HFCE was not indicated in the abovementioned World Bank report, the data has been estimated by our agency. The HFCE figures of the following 30 countries have been estimated by our agency: Andorra, Cabo Verde, Djibouti, Ethiopia, Fiji, Greenland, Haiti, Iraq, Kiribati, Libya, Liechtenstein, Maldives, Marshall Islands, Micronesia, Monaco, Myanmar, Papua New Guinea, Samoa, San Marino, Sao Tome and Principe, Seychelles, Sierra Leone, Solomon Islands, Somalia, Sri Lanka, Suriname, Syrian Arab Republic, Tuvalu, Yemen and Zambia.

To determine whether Internet access is restricted in a given country, we looked at the ranking provided by the international non-governmental organization Reporters Without Borders, available on its official website.

The distribution of income by quintiles is taken from the statistical data of the Development Research Group at the World Bank. Not all the data refer to the same year (the World Bank data ranges from 1992 to 2013).

This ranking may only be freely reused and shared if a link back to this page is provided and it is made clear to users that the data comes from the T-Index study. Please copy and paste the following statement:

T-Index Study 2016, by TRANSLATED. TRANSLATED is the leading professional online translation agency providing language services to over 70,000 international customers for more than 15 years:
www.translated.net/en/languages-that-matter

Credits

Many thanks to all the people who provided us with useful data or tips (in alphabetical order):

Contacts

For further information, please contact: aurore@translated.net

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