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Strong online spending recorded as market growth continues

27 September 2017 - 10:22 by Graham Miller

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The latest figures from IMRG indicate that there was a 16.4 per cent increase in the number of sales made via safe shopping online last month, with British consumers also spending more on average for each e-commerce transaction than at any point in the past half-decade.

The typical shopper spent £130 with each visit to the digital checkout during August, a figure that has not been topped since 2012. However, this positive news was tempered by signs that certain retail categories are not fairing as well as others.

For example, fewer people purchased consumer electronics last month, marking almost half a year of decline for this segment. Pricier items like TVs, smartphones and games consoles seem not to be attracting as much attention as they have in the past, perhaps due to a lack of major new releases during this period.

At the other end of the scale, products designed for home improvement and decoration enjoyed a 20.5 per cent increase in sales made via safe shopping online, according to Internet Retailing.

Fashion underwent a similarly impressive growth spurt, with sales up by 17.9 per cent in August as people prepared their wardrobes for the end of the warm summer weather.

Report spokesperson, Bhavesh Unadkat, said that 2017 had seen a swell of uncertainty wash over consumers, with Brexit negotiations and other global issues taking their toll on the retail market. The fact that the e-commerce market seems to be holding up well is seen as a good sign which could bode well for the rest of the year, so long as things remain stable.

Analysts also found that click and collect is continuing to gain traction as a delivery option, with almost a third of online orders placed with retailers that offer it being picked up in-store rather than shipped to customers’ homes.