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E-commerce growth is strong in April

15 May 2012 - 10:29 by Simon Crisp

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Last month was a good month for the online retail industry in the UK, as sales were up by nine per cent when compared with April 2011.

A report, published by the British Retail Consortium, points out that the growth registered in April 2012 is significant because the equivalent period last year was already seen as a very strong month for safe shopping online.

The presence of the entire Easter weekend last April, meant that there were plenty of opportunities for people to splash out on products via e-commerce in their time off. However, the ensuing 12 months have given the market even more time to develop and grow.

The retail industry as a whole in the UK was in a worse state, with like for like sales dropping by 3.3 per cent last month.

The high street was particularly afflicted by the adverse weather conditions, with the rainfall and cloudy skies failing to encourage consumers to get out and about and spend their cash.

This was of course a positive state of affairs for firms offering safe shopping online, since many consumers chose to stay indoors and harness e-commerce to make purchases.

BRC spokesperson, Stephen Robertson, said that many retailers were expecting positive performance in 2012, largely due to the celebratory atmosphere generated by the Olympics and the Jubilee celebrations prior to it.

Of course, whether this will help to buoy high street retailers or just give the advantage to those operating solely online, remains to be seen.

The weather will continue to play an important factor, because high street sales are clearly quite sensitive to whether or not the sun is out and people feel like walking from shop to shop in order to secure a bargain. Thankfully, the world of e-commerce remains unaffected by inclement conditions, at least, during the ordering stage.