Colombia flag Colombia: Buying and Selling

Advertising and marketing in Colombia

Marketing opportunities

Consumer Profile
With a GDP per capita of USD 5.750 in 2021 (IMF), Colombian consumers tend to have middle-class consumption habits and household debt remains quite high. The growth of private consumption remains satisfactory (+4.45% in 2019 - World Bank, latest data available). Since 2012, Colombia has experienced steady growth in the middle class which continues to expand considerably. At the national level, 35.7% of the Colombian population lives under the poverty line and around 31% of the population is considered as being part of the middle class (Departamento Administrativo Nacional de Estadística, 2019 latest data available). The profile of Colombian consumers is not homogeneous and there exists a substantial gap between urban and rural areas.

Colombian household consumption mainly concerns primary needs and education, but a change in consumer habits can be observed and Colombian consumers are increasingly willing to buy non-vital products. Colombian consumers are strongly influenced by fashion trends, brands and promotions, but there is also a strong influence of traditions on consumption habits. Colombians are currently experiencing increasing brand loyalty levels. Healthy and ethnic food categories are especially fast-growing, and organic food products are a new trend, as Colombian consumers are more concerned about ecological issues.

Consumer Behaviour
In the aftermath of the financial crisis, purchasing power has declined for the poorest households, which have struggled to buy commodities. While the development of local industry remains insufficient, Colombians have become accustomed to buying imported products. Price is an important factor in buying decisions in Colombia. However, Colombian consumers are giving increasing importance to ecological and ethical characteristics when buying a product. Colombian consumers are increasingly curious about where and how the product is made. They also pay attention to whether the product is recyclable or not.

Regarding food products, consumers take heed of the brand's reputation, the quality of nutritional information and the attractiveness of the packaging. After-sales service and consumer support are decisive factors in the purchase decision. Only a minority of Colombians has a high purchasing power, and for the majority of Colombian consumers the price remains the main criterion.

Even though online commerce remains underdeveloped, it is growing steadily and has benefited a lot from the lockdowns due to the COVID-19. The growth rate of online sales in 2020 was 34% (Statistica). In the coming years, ecommerce is expected to benefit from massive investments in network infrastructure by the Colombian government. Colombian online consumers are used to buying from foreign websites, mainly American, Chinese, Mexican and Brazilian.

Consumers Associations
Colombian Confederation of Consumers
Main Advertising Agencies
Advertising Agency Pezeta
Advertising Agencies Directory
Publicitaria
Advertising Agency Dattis
See the list of advertising agencies affiliated to the UCEP

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Latest Update: September 2022