The latest figures released by the IMRG Capgemini e-retail sales index have shown that eCommerce sales increased by 11.5% in July 2011, when compared to the same period in 2010. The figures also show that British shoppers spent £5.58bn online in July, 5% up on the previous month.
Although the continued growth is positive news for the online sector, the increase was expected to be higher for the second half of 2011. The slowing growth is said to be down to the sunny weather which hit the UK in the second half of July, spurring consumers to head out and shop on the high street.
This was confirmed by high street sales stats which showed that overall, the slowing of online growth was counterbalanced by the high-street, which reported a 2.5% month-on-month sales increase in July helped by a food and clothing sales boost. Online, certain sectors did perform strongly such as Home & Garden, which increased 27% year-on-year – this is compared with slow growth last year of only 8%. The clothing sector continues to expand rapidly, seeing a 25% year-on-year rise as shoppers update their wardrobes for the summer season and take advantage of the sales.
Tina Spooner, Chief Information Officer at IMRG, comments: “While the Index performed ahead of expectation during the first six months of the year, a slowdown in e-retail growth during the second half was always going to be a possibility. Between July and December last year the Index recorded strong growth, with sales up 21% year-on-year, and therefore over the coming months sales may well be slower, having come from a stronger base last year. However, online retail continues to consistently deliver double-digit growth, despite the retail gloom on the high street’.
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