E-commerce in Latin America


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E-commerce in Latin America

  1. 1. E-commerce Study in Latin America May 2012The Boom YearsE-commerce in Latin America practically doubled in the last two years,reaching US$ 43 billion in sales in 2011. This intense online activity is largely attributedto regional economic growth, but it is mainly the work of a myriad of small Latin-American entrepreneurial endeavors. AméricaEconomía 1
  2. 2. E-commerce study in Latin America May 2012 correios.com I n 2010, Emerson Andrade, Alex Tabor and Julio Vas- Customized Delivery concellos were three pau- listas (São Paulo residents) T he Brazilian state-owned mail service company, Correios, made a timely decision in the past century: in 2000 they created a special division for the shipment of purchases made via e-commerce. In order to promote the new system, they reduced shipping costs by 30 with a dream. Today, they are percent and guaranteed parcels to be delivered in three Peixe Urbano, a group-buying days. In 2006 there were already 4 million e-commerce company with 1,000 employees parcels per year and in 2011 the figure went up to 18 million, throughout Brazil and in several almost 20 percent of all packages shipped. From 2010 to 2011 the increase in sales was 36 percent. Its main clients countries in Latin America. Their are Netshoes and Walmart, and it is the largest distributor careers are booming, as they of e-commerce purchased goods in Brazil, with a 40 percent have made e-commerce one of participation in a market where there are close to thirty the sources of their success. Not competing companies. “The buyer pays for shipping,” says only did Peixe Urbano survive Alex do Nascimento, in charge of web purchased parcels since 2000”, but in order to expand their sales, large sellers the flood of coupon aggrega- offer free shipping, which also increases our turnover,” he says. On its website, Correios also tors that appeared in the wake has a virtual store to market products that are on sale. of Groupon, but successfully Correios has conquered Brazil, but it is out for more. This state company just modified its competed with them in their own charter, which today allows extending its successful business model beyond its own country turf. They qualify as a Brazil- and –given the case– competing with the likes of Amazon. ian e-commerce miracle, after three rounds of investment, four acquisitions, and a plan to cover social shopping and e-commerce innovation, logistic quality, in the region every two years the whole region with expansion are ripe for consolidation,” safety and service development since 2003, and in top of that, initiatives such as the purchase says an analyst who believes enabling atmospheres, you will it is increasing its significance, of Groupalia. e-commerce will make Peixe begin to understand how Latin as it reached 1% of the GDP “We will become the leaders Urbano grow at least 50 percent America doubled its e-commerce in Brazil. in all our operational segments,” this year. volume in the past two years. In fact, the high regional says COO and founder Emerson If you multiply this by the Total regional B2C (business figures are heavily impacted Andrade. “The businesses of thousands, and put them into to consumer) e-commerce sales by Brazil’s e-commerce perfor- reached US$ 22 billion in 2009 mance. The economic boom the 3, 2, 1, takeoff and US$ 43 billion in 2011, a country has experienced lately Total e-commerce spending in Latin America (in $million dollars) 98.5 percent increase. Actually, has direct correlation with its e- Source: AméricaEconomía Intelligence 69,994.5 e e-commerce has been doubling commerce market. In 2011 alone, 70,000 UP TREND 65,000 60,000 B2C as a proportion of GDP 55,000 54,470.5 e Source: AméricaEconomía Intelligence BRAZIL MEXICO 50,000 CHILE LATIN AMERICA 1.20% 45,000 43,230.5 1.01% 40,000 1.00% 0.83% 0.85% 35,000 0.80% 30,264.5 30,000 0.76% 25,000 0.60% 0.52% 0.64% 0.61% 21,774.9 0.61% 20,000 0.54% 0.54% 0.54% 0.52% 15,645.0 0.40% 0.33% 0.42% 15,000 0.42% 0.26% 0.36% 0.36% 10,572.5 0.19% 0.32% 0.29% 0.30% 10,000 7,542.1 0.20% 0.19% 0.25% 0.14% 0.14%e: Estimado 4,885.0 0.20% 0.18% 5,000 0.11% 0.11% 1,692.4 3,065.8 0.10% 0.07% 0.07% 0.10% 0.13% 0 0.00% 0.05% 2003 2004 2005 2006 2007 2008 2009 2010 2011 2012 2013 2003 2004 2005 2006 2007 2008 2009 2010 2011 2 Visa
  3. 3. E-commerce Study in Latin America May 2012 walmart.comthe sales in the sector reachedUS$ 25 billion, accounting for From Mexico to Brazilover half of the regional total. But not everything can be W almart, the world’s largest retailer has taken note that the “big is beautiful” strategy will no longer help it keep growing with the arrival of mobile e-commerce. “People are making large online purchases and complementing them with small purchases at storesexplained by the enormous near their homes,” says Natalie Berg, a global researcher at Planet Retail.economic growth. In a short That should worry this giant that only sellsperiod of time, Brazil has seen 5 percent of its overall sales online. In orderthe emergence of a new middle to overcome this weakness, Walmart is currently testing an e-commerce model inclass, with bank accounts and Mexico, observing the profit margins of itsinternet connections, who have small store subsidiary, Bodegas Aurrera. Abecome e-commerce clients. Bra- model it soon intends to export to Brazil,zil also pro-actively encouraged the second priority world market for thee-commerce, reducing interest company’s e -commerce strategy. “We are underway to create the next generation ofrates, lowering taxes, and adapt- e-commerce, offering the latest in onlineing its legislation to the Brazilian innovations to give our customers a uniqueconsumption patterns. Current shopping experience,” says Neil Ashe, president and executive officer at Walmart Globalregulations, for example, allow E-Commerce, who arrived to the company from the world of digital contents. Ashe, aclients to return free-of-charge former president of CBS Interactive, has as his primary goal the management of the recent acquisition of Yihaodian, a Chinese e-commerce company.products they have purchasedonline, a decision that has hadan impact on consumer trust aswell as in companies’ logisticsdevelopment. “We had to de-velop new systems to adapt to “Brazil is our second priority after China,” states Neilthe fact that Brazilians are usedto trying out stuff before buying Ashe, president of Walmart Global E-Commerce.it,” says Alex do Nascimento,head of parcel shipping divisionin Correios. E-commerce now jor global players have decided E-commerce speaks Portugueserepresents 20 percent of Cor- to strongly expand in Brazil. Country by country participation in the total expenditure of regional B2C.reios’ total shipments. According to internet traffic Source: AméricaEconomía Intelligence Brazil’s size is no secret, provider comScore, 70 of the COLOMBIAand it is attracting global pow- 100 most visited Latin American CENTRAL AMERICA 2.3% 2.4% PERU 1.4% OTHERSerhouses such as Apple and websites are Brazilian. And 87 VENEZUELA 1.21% 3.3%Amazon, which have announced percent of the 78 million Bra- CHILEtentative plans to start operations zilian internet users visit retail 3.5%in Brazil in September, as well websites to compare prices. ARGENTINA 6.2%as Walmart, that has confirmed With 173 million creditit will dramatically broaden its cards and a population of 195 THE CARIBBEANpresence through mid-size stores million, Brazil is fertile ground 6.4%similar to those it operates in for e-commerce. However, theMexico under the Bodega Aur- previous figure does not mean MEXICOrera brand. “Brazil is our sec- 80% of Brazilians have credit 14.2% BRAZILond priority after China,” says cards –Brazil is actually more 59.1%Neil Ashe, Walmart’s Global like Spain than any other LatinE-Commerce president. American country in terms of It is no chance that three ma- banking penetration indicators. AméricaEconomía 3
  4. 4. E-commerce study in Latin America May 2012 which reality exceeded expec-A prediction US$ 8 billion short tations. Online gaming playersIn 2009, industry estimates Vostu and Mentez are interestingpredicted that e-commerce sales cases, selling games for underin Latin America would reach US$ 1 per unit, and seeminglyUS$ 35 billion in 2011, a pre- paving the way to this segment’sdiction that fell US$ 8 billion explosion. It is similar to whatshort. Nobody could foresee the happens in the Apple virtualrecent dynamic and highly suc- store, with over half a millioncessful endeavors emerging out software applications for any ofof innovation-led and continu- “Nobody could anticipate the the company’s products. Peopleously improving environments.“Nobody could anticipate the dazzling emergence of coupon begin downloading free games, then start downloading songsdazzling emergence of coupon aggregators and shopping clubs, for 99 cents, learn to trust theaggregators and shopping clubs, website, and almost without re-whose models are creative, not whose models are the most alizing it, end up buying a US$so much because of their busi-ness models, but for the way in creative, not so much because of 2,000 MacBook Pro. The intensity of Latin Ameri-which they have implemented their business model, but how they cans’ online activity, as evi-them and the results they have denced in how much they useobtained,” says Marcos Pu- implemented them, and the results it for entertainment and theeyrredón, president of eInstituto(formerly known as Instituto they obtained,” says Marcos presence they have in social networks, has made socialLationamericano de Comercio Pueyrredón of eInstituto. commerce open new channelsElectrónico, the Latin American for online transactions, evenE-Commerce Institute). This is Cuponaso, which are revolution- together with the dynamism of for lower-middle class consum-the case of undertakings such izing consumption patterns in the the online gaming and digital ers that were not on anyone’sas Peixe Urbano, Geelbe (ac- markets where they are present. content markets, make social horizon two years ago. Videotive in Colombia, Argentina The emergence of these commerce a new relevant actor, on demand, for instance, hasand Mexico) or the Ecuadorian completely unexpected players, and explain the US$ 8 billion by started finding its niche through highly popular global and Latin American companies such asgeelbe.com Netflix and Netmovie. The Midnight Hour But of course, attention today D iscount sales website Geelbe does not stop registering yearly two-digit growth figures in Colombia, Mexico and Argentina. Its core business is to sell leftover stock via the Internet at low prices. It is what in the brick-and-mortar world is called a markdown is focused on the mothership of social networks. Facebook took up 30% of store. From leftover Ray-Ban shades and Tommy Hilfiger watches, to Lacoste shirts or thermostat the time Latin American inter- coffee mugs, everything can be on clearance. Agustín net users spent online in 2011, Pallotti, its CEO, is amazed that the best strategy has an increase of 9.5 percent over proved to be sending an email with its products of the the previous year, according to day at midnight. “I am still not certain why that is the comScore figures. Facebook moment where we have the greatest response”, he says. But he has stopped testing other hours of the now wants to take that immense day. Another secret of his is packaging the products mass of users to its own pur- as if he were sending them to himself. According to chasing channels. In this way, Pallotti, Colombia has a cheap and high quality mail the company’s public offering service, but Mexico and Argentina still need to take Introduction to Logistics I and II. (IPO) fetched US$ 11.6 bil-4 Visa
  5. 5. E-commerce Study in Latin America May 2012 lan.comlion to invest in expansion andacquisitions such as its recent Will you Marry Me?US$ 1 billion purchase of photosharing app Instagram, that may A ll the e-commerce strategies in LAN Airlines’ web platform aim at client engagement, more than at selling tickets. Even at the cost of losing profit margins, something the system would allow if its focus was offering cheaper prices. In fact, what you pay onlineturn out being an e-commerce almost has no difference with the store. According to Elías Senerman, Lan.com manager, “welandmark. Such a massive injec- are more focused on increasing customer loyalty in thetion of capital may help answer long term than in obtaining profit quickly.” In 2009, Lan. com implemented what it calls its “fingers” advertisingFacebook’s big question of how strategy, a graphic way of showing its desire to empowerto generate a clear monetization the client, making him or her feel that with just a couplescheme. of strokes on the keyboard he or she can travel anywhere Commerce through Facebook in the world cheaply. They began using Facebook, and areis being called f-commerce these heavily preparing programs for smartphones, both for their clients checking in from them, and being able to usedays. Yet there are analysts, them at the airport in the way of a GPS taking them tosuch as Sucharita Mulpuru, of the boarding gate and to his or her seat. In that way, theForrester Consulting, who are strategy points at the platform, which apart from sellingnot sure that e-commerce will airplane tickets, will encourage loyal customers to, for example, make hotel and rental car transactions there.be the company’s sorcerer’sstone. “It is still to be proventhat the platform can be a suit-able place for shopping, since,its stores do not allow to fully “It is still to be seen if Facebook can be a suitablereplicate the brand experienceof the official websites of the place for shopping, since its stores do not fullypotentially interested compa-nies,” she argues. replicate the brand experience of official company Still, there are many prepar- websites,” says Sucharita Mulpuru of Forrester.ing for its arrival. LAN Airlines,for example, is testing its in-corporation into the Facebook E-commerce on the mapplatform, replicating Delta’s Countries/selected blocks, B2C in $million dollars. Source: AméricaEconomía Intelligencemodel. “For now it is only a 2005 2006 2007 2008 2009 2010 2011small-scale test, but we want BRAZIL 2,269.9 3,540.5 4,898.7 8,572.6 13,230.4 17,851.4 25,552.8to be prepared, to understand MEXICO 567.1 867.6 1,377.0 2,010.0 2,624.9 4,330.5 6,137.1what is effectively happening THE CARIBBEAN 731,0 949,3 1.104,9 1.244,7 1.455,9 1.895,5 2.752,0with the platform and to confirm ARGENTINA 240,9 378,1 561,5 732,8 875,0 1.797,6 2.695,3if transactions are effectivelybeing made there,” says Lan. CHILE 242,8 471,8 687,5 919,5 1.027,9 1.141,6 1.489,9com manager Elías Senerman. VENEZUELA 253.4 489.6 821.5 787.8 906.1 1,117.8 1,418.4 A key issue that companies CENTRAL AMERICA 189,2 359,9 499,0 563,9 637,2 729,6 1.051,0are seeking to better understand COLOMBIA 150.3 175.0 201.3 301.9 435.0 606.8 998.0is how to maintain and increase PERU 109,1 145,5 218,2 250,9 276,0 426,9 611,0conversion rates; the percentage OTHER 131.3 164.8 203.0 260.9 306.5 366.9 525.0of visitors to a website who ac- LATAM + CARIBBEAN 4,885.0 7,542.1 10,572.5 15,645.0 21,774.9 30,264.5 43,230.5tually make a purchase. consumer online purchases are PC, but that is no longer so. A consumption will be intimatelyThe gift of ubiquity made through conventional growing number of experts think related to mobile consumption,Many continue to believe that channels like a desktop or laptop that, starting this year, online thanks to smartphones and tab- AméricaEconomía 5
  6. 6. E-commerce study in Latin America May 2012groupon.com ally very receptive to discount offers, and the massive market The Coupon Guy Doesn’t Kill the Star penetration of internet devices T he top player in early sales of products and services at a discount hit the region, willing to dispute the common knowledge assessment that a Latin American man would never invite a woman for dinner to then pay the bill with a 50 percent discount coupon. Against all is strengthening the power of price comparison and instant forecasts, the annual 55 percent growth of Groupon in shopping,” says Alejandro the region shows that common knowledge was wrong. Fosk, comScore vice president The company started operations with four employees for Latin America. less than two years ago, and it now has 360 employees in It is not farfetched then, to Uruguay, Argentina and Chile. And Groupon’s expansion assume that in two years, when has been swift in order to not give eventual competitors time, and to know the particular aspects of each market. this study is conducted again, Thus, the company acquired the Chilean Clandescuento. mobile online use will infuse cl after it had been in operations for only four months. dynamism into the e-commerce According to Federico Malek, CEO of the division market. grouping those three countries, “people are eager to But the shift of consumers buy something and are only waiting for greater offers.” So far, so good. But, Malek is surprised how different the towards mobile technology by countries in which he directs the operation are, a fact way of smartphones and tablets that hinders general solutions. For example, in Chile an is not the only new trend. Ac- iPad can almost be bought at the same price than in the United States, while in Argentina, it is cording to Alejandro Prince, of still not possible to import Apple products in order to force Apple to set up an assembly line the consulting firm Prince & in the country, as they did with BlackBerry. Cook, many Latin American online consumers are growingShopping cart increasingly impatient withMost relevant factors when buying online (from 1 to 4)Source: AméricaEconomía Intelligence survey delivery times and are opting to pick the packages up them- Availability of Products 3.52 selves from distribution points. “Logistic problems begin to have Transaction Speed 3.52 a solution with the emergence of Ease of Use 3.49 services that allow consumers Security 3.45 to pick up what they bought,” Prices 3.44 says Prince. Delivery Options/ Shipment 3.43 One example is Falabella Argentina, with e-commerce Product Arrival Guarantees 3.39 representing 10 percent of its Payment Options 3.36 sales. The majority of products Supply Diversity 3.31 purchased online are picked up Discounts 3.29 at the store by the customer, ac- Post Sale Services 2.93 cording to e-commerce manager Patricia Jabsen. Argentina has 2.60 2.70 2.80 2.90 3.00 3.10 3.20 3.30 3.40 3.50 3.60 the highest shipping costs in Latin America and consumerslets. “The current challenge is in smartphones and tablets when market. All indicators suggest prefer to go the distance to pickhaving a simple website in which sales through those channels are that the future is in smartphones the product up rather than pay-clients may shop from their marginal? Simply because the and tablets. ing more for it to be delivered atmobile phone,” says Armando industry is changing at a diz- “It is a phenomenon we dis- home. It comes as no surprise thatArias, Walmart’s e-commerce zying speed, and innovations covered mid last year and have the logistical solution for regionalmanager for Latin America. such as coupons or digital goods already confirmed. The Latin e-commerce stems from strong Why is there so much interest can suddenly change the entire American consumer is gener- consumer demand. “There are6 Visa
  7. 7. E-commerce Study in Latin America May 2012a lot of people willing to buy, are approaching those of coun- at least the next three years we rate will keep surpassing that ofbut what is still missing in the tries like the United States”, says will maintain double-digit an- the United States, which in 2011region is supply,” Fosk states. eInstituto’s Pueyrredón. Annual nual growth and surpass the 19 reached a 14.4 percent over theAccording to the Argentinean growth probably will not stay percent world average”. previous year.Chamber of Electronic Com- at the current 50 percent rate Latin America’s participa- According to a Goldmanmerce survey, complaints by that has been the trend for the tion in global e-commerce will Sachs report, e-commerce willconsumers about lack of sup- past decade, he adds, but “for continue to grow, and its growth generate US$ 2 million in onlineply in 2011 increased 7 percentover 2009. Towards the balance point BRAZIL MEXICO One of the key factors for Percentage term variation of e-commerce spending in Latin America CHILE LATIN AMERICA Source: AméricaEconomía Intelligencethe increase in demand has beenthe decrease in transactional 140.0 132.6security breaches, one of thebiggest historical problems with 120.0e-commerce in the region. Ac-cording to Guillermo Rospigliosi, 100.0 94.3Latin American general manager 76.1for CyberSource –a payment 80.0 70.3 75.0processing management and 70.1 64.3 56.0 65.0 58.7anti-fraud security company 60.0 59.3 54.4 48.0 54.3 53.0acquired by Visa in 2010 with 54.4 43.1 46.0 39.2 39.0 41.7over 370,000 clients wordwide, 40.0 40.2 38.4 42.8 34.9“the boom is intimately related 32.1 33.8 30.6 30.5with an increase in consumer 20.0 11.1trust, e-commerce is already 12.6 11.8considered to be more safer.” 0.0 Var 04/03 Var 05/04 Var 06/05 Var 07/06 Var 08/07 Var 09/08 Var 10/09 Var 11/10In 2011, 63 percent of Mexi-cans declared trusting online falabella.compayment methods, as opposedto 2009, when the figure was at Off and Online Co-existence55 percent. F alabella, the Chilean company with the highest listed stock exchange value, and with operations in Chile, Argentina, Peru and Colombia, has taken note of the mobile customers’Childhood’s End new habits and will launch its smartphoneHow long will Latin American and tablet platform this year. “People cane-commerce be able to maintain already enter from their mobiles, but theythe current rate of growth, which can’t make transactions,” says Patriciareached 42.8 percent between Jabsen, its e-commerce manager in2010 and 2011? Argentina. “This year we will first perform an upgrade of our electronic platform and In a constantly evolving immediately afterward we will launch it forindustry, it is very difficult to mobiles,” she says. Jabsen is also presidentpredict. However, estimates of the Argentinean Electronic Commercepredict a 26 percent growth in Chamber of Commerce, and she believes2012 and a 28.5 percent in 2013. that “it is a false dichotomy to say that one has to opt between developing the online Many believe the industry is sales channel or physical stores, since thesoon to reach maturity. “Latin offer online has to be complementary toAmerica consolidated its com- the stock at non-virtual stores”. Accordingmercial power through the inter- to her, this complementary character helped Falabella win the award for the best e-retail companynet and its consumption patterns of the year awarded by eInstituto. AméricaEconomía 7
  8. 8. E-commerce study in Latin America May 2012 tucarro.compurchases per second in 2012.This depends basically on the International License Platemarket behaviors of China andthe United States, but Latin C ar sales classified ads pages are booming in Venezuela and Colombia. “They are two very different markets, but the platform works the same in both,” says Venezuelan Ignacio Caride, its CEO, through a business model that allowsAmerica will keep gaining posi- to evenly grow at a 40 percent annual rate, no matter iftions, as long as it maintains its Venezuela has a 30 percent inflation rate, while in Colombiaeconomic and online population it does not go beyond an annual 8 percent.” The webpagegrowth rates. started out in Caride’s home country, competing with the classified ad pages of newspapers, and winning because, There are other elements that according to him, at Tucarro.com “the ad stays on until the carindicate the pace is not going to is sold without a time limit.” Every person placing an ad paysslow down. “If e-commerce only between US$ 22 and US$ 32 to be on the page until the carconsisted of retail and tourism, in is sold or the sale is suspended. “Over time I discovered thatthe United States the proportion the key to the business is to take a picture of the car from the same angle to give every offer the same exposure,” Caride assures. The page has its associatedwould be 63 to 37 percent,” says websites Tulancha.com and Tuavion.com, where placing an ad costs up to US$ 100.Fosk. “But in Latin America it isthe other way around, which isanomalous given the great po- does not require the consumer to Carolina Forero, Visa’s execu-tential retail has in the region.” enter their information for every tive director for innovation andThe presence of giants such as transaction. The speed of the e-commerce, refering to this Publisher & EditorWalmart and global Latin Ameri- digital wallet payment systems platform that offers businesses Elías Selman Carranzacan retailers of amazing growth is an important factor as it also greater conversion rates and AméricaEconomía Intelligence Jaime Contreras S., directorhave to be taken into account as reduces the premature abandon- increased security. Rodrigo Dörn, researcher Dalomy Switt, researcherwell. All of them are much more ment of online shopping carts. Every day has its way. Thepowerful and have many more “The adoption of mobile sentence applies to what lies Art direction & design Álvaro Araya Urquizaclients than any individual actor technology, social networks ahead for e-commerce, as digital Illustrationsin the regional tourism industry. and the increase in digital goods wallets and other innovations Patricio Otniel There are still other regional purchases are changing our way that are just being conceived, Editorsgaps to fill. According to eInsti- of communicating and our con- come to the region, are tested, Andrés Almeida F. Samuel Silva (English version)tuto, 70 percent of Brazilians, sumer behavior, both online and and keep feeding the industry’s WriterArgentineans and Chileans in brick-and-mortar stores,” says bloom and boom. Pablo Rosendo Gonzalezspend less than 10 percent oftheir annual budgets on onlineshopping, only half of what citi- Methodologyzens in developed countries do. The estimates by AméricaEconomía transactions held between consumers andThat gap could become smaller Intelligence for the elaboration of this retail enterprises, tourism companies andas smartphone penetration in- study for 2010 and 2011 were realized from airlines, between consumers (C2C) and information provided by the official sources transactions with governments (online taxcreases throughout the region. in each country (electronic commerce payment) in the definition. The amounts inIt is estimated that 50 percent of chambers or associations), which were dollars were obtained using the exchangemobile phones in Latin America homologated and complemented from rate valid on the last day of the year forwill be smartphones by 2015. industrial analyses, expert opinions, and the every respective year. There are also new devel- information supplied by a survey specifically We thank the following information sources created by AméricaEconomía Intelligence for their collaboration: AMIPCI, Camara-e.opments gaining momentum and its own estimations, considering other Net, CACE, Cavecom, CCS, FMI, eInstituto,worldwide that should soon variables related to electronic channel sales. World Internet Statistics, Cepal, Worldtake hold in Latin America. For the effects of this study, we define Tourism Organization, the ColombianOne of them is digital wallets, (B2C) electronic commerce as those Chamber of Electronic Commerce, Receitaan innovation that offers a safer commercial transactions executed online, Federal, Banxico and many other experts and ending in, at least, a purchase order being e-commerce area leaders in the region, whoand simpler way to pay, which sent to a natural person. We included the helped us gather the necessary information.8 Visa