Guatemala flag Guatemala: Buying and Selling

E-commerce in Guatemala


Internet access
According to the U.S. Census Bureau Report, there were 6.2 million internet users in Guatemala in 2017, making the penetration rate 37%. Partially as a result of high connectivity costs, just a small share of Guatemala’s population are connected to the internet, making it one of Latin America’s least connected countries. Internet access is available throughout Guatemala, but it is mostly concentrated in and around urban areas and touristic destinations. In 2017, the country joined the Alliance for Affordable Internet, making it the first country in Central American to do so. As part of their strategy to lower prices, the government intends to develop a clear and strong broadband plan and provide concrete steps for ensuring digital inclusion for all Guatemalans.
E-commerce market
Guatemala's e-commerce market is currently in its early stages, and most purchases are made from international websites. However, the market is growing rapidly in the country, and some large banks, supermarkets and associations have begun to adapt to e-commerce. Even some government agencies have recently launched websites that offer interactive services, acknowledging e-commerce as an important market. According to the Guatemalan Association of e-Commerce, in 2017 internet purchases reached US$ 540 million from foriegn websites and US$ 50 million from local shops. Guatemalans still prefer face to face interaction, but younger generations are moving away from traditional retail and using technology more. Only 17% of Guatemalans own a credit or debit card, so most transactions are cash based. Only 1% of the population uses mobile money as a form of payment. Mobile e-commerce is increasingly popular, with 18% of people in Guatemala currently using trading or e-commerce apps, according to a UNCTAD study. Low connectivity and infrastructure, few credit card users and difficulties with delivery are still challenges for e-commerce to grow in the country. However, the market has been showing growth in spite of those challenges. The Government is working on a set of laws to renew the existing legislation against fraud and customs smuggling, which is expected to positively impact e-commerce. Some of the most popular e-commerce websites in the country include,,, and global giants Amazon and Ebay.

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Latest Update: April 2024