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Brits splash out 23 billion online in Q1

16 April 2014 - 14:51 by Graham Miller

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The first three months of 2014 were particularly busy for e-commerce retailers, as the latest figures from Capgemini, show that consumers in the UK spent around £23.1 billion shopping online over this period, according to the International Business Times.

This is up by almost a fifth compared with the same span of time in 2013, which means that growth in online sales is at a three year high at the moment, fuelled by a mixture of growing consumer confidence and a boom in mobile browsing.

Report spokesperson, Chris Webster, explained that the amount of cash being spent through web channels was a sign that Britain?s economy is strengthening. And it seems that the benefits are being felt across the board, rather than being limited to a specific industry or sector.

Next year, analysts expect that inflation will finally be overtaken by average wage increases, helping to put more cash in people's pockets and encouraging them to spend it on sites which offer safe shopping online.

A typical e-commerce basket was worth £86 in March this year, up by almost £10 on 2013. In addition, conversion rates were at their highest point for half a decade, meaning people are not just visiting e-commerce sites casually, but heading to them and then actually making a purchase.

IMRG CIO, Tina Spooner, said that looking at basket values and conversion rates which are on the rise can help analysts to determine that confidence levels amongst consumers are recovering after the economic downturn. And in addition, she points out that the power of online shopping is continuing to hit new peaks, making 2014 a year in which sales will continue to outpace performance figures from past quarters.

As the economy improves and people feel safe to spend, the entire country should benefit from a return to prosperity.