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December’s online sales outdo slow high street spending

13 January 2016 - 13:49 by Graham Miller

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The latest figures from the British Retail Consortium (BRC) reveal that December was another sluggish month for sales on the high street, with many people turning to safe shopping online rather than heading to bricks and mortar stores, according to the International Business Times.

Year on year, there was a 0.1 per cent rise in retail sales across all channels last month. But in the e-commerce sector alone the 15.1 per cent surge in activity was yet more evidence that safe shopping online is helping to keep the whole market afloat in the UK.

Report spokesperson, Helen Dickinson, said that falling prices are making things great for consumers at the moment, even if retailers are being put under added pressure as a result.

Dickinson went on to point out that although the nation’s economy is in a stronger position than it has been for several years, retailers are finding it hard to reap the benefits because of the changes in shopping habits that consumers are developing, thanks to the rise of e-commerce sites.

Analysts also said that the impact of Black Friday was presenting problems for retailers, since it concentrates a lot of sales into a single 24 hour period and means that December’s results are negatively skewed. This means that companies are trying to find new ways to ensure that even with major sales events like this becoming more popular, the pre-Christmas shopping period is strong throughout its duration.

For consumers, the appeal of carrying out extensive research before making a purchase is too much to resist, with this being the final piece in the puzzle of why high street growth is flat and online shopping is still enjoying a double digit increase in sales across the country at the moment.