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Big boost to online deliveries reported in January

07 March 2018 - 14:32 by David Aiken

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In the first month of 2018 the growth in the number of orders delivered to consumers who had carried out safe shopping online was at its highest level for half a decade.

This is according to the latest figures from IMRG, which reveal a 20.6 per cent uptick in shipments compared with January last year.

One of the reasons for this is that people were less eager to head out to the shops as rainy weather lashed the country. Report spokesperson, Andrew Starkey, said that this helped e-commerce revenues to increase by almost 14 per cent in January.

Analysts also pointed out that one of the reasons that deliveries rose so steeply is due to the large number of items being returned in the wake of the festive period.

The good news for consumers is that 90 per cent of packages arrived on time in January; slightly less than the 93 per cent figure achieved a year earlier, but higher than the 85 per cent success rate recorded in December.

Experts believe that as people carry out safe shopping online and choose next day delivery in greater numbers, lateness figures may fluctuate because of the added pressure this will put on the infrastructure.

Things like delivery drones could address this issue, although they are still a few years away from being commercially viable on a national scale.

Shipments to customers in Europe were up in January as the weakness of the pound against the Euro encouraged more overseas shoppers to bag a bargain from UK-based sites, according to Internet Retailing. Whether this trend continues will be dependent on the outcome of the Brexit negotiations and how the nation’s economy performs over the rest of 2018, when uncertainty is likely to persist.