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Top e-commerce sites struggle to attract visitors

12 August 2016 - 10:50 by Paul Tissington

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A new report into the UK’s 25 biggest online shopping websites has revealed that some of the biggest names in the business are suffering from a slump in visitor numbers, according to Internet Retailing.

The Pepper.com study found that while Amazon and eBay are still the two most prominent and regularly visited sites, both saw a decline in the number of visitors during the second quarter of 2016.

The first six months of the year saw consumers in the UK collectively generate 7.2 billion distinct visits to all of the top sites combined, although Q2 was 3.77 per cent down on Q1.

A 1.84 per cent dip in visits to eBay is seen as a sign that even the most prominent retail brands cannot rest on their laurels and assume that shoppers will keep choosing them.

There were some success stories, with Homebase.co.uk enjoying a 12.46 per cent rise in visitors, just ahead of hm.com with an 11.01 per cent boost and Asos.com with its own healthy 7.29 per cent increase.

Report spokesperson, Danny Munday, said that some of the sites which had managed to grow visitor numbers in the past three months were largely bolstered as a result of one-off events, such as bank holidays, allowing them to buck the overall downward trend.

It was also revealed that most people browse sites that offer shopping online from mobile devices, with 3.8 billion visits made from smartphones and tablets in the first six months of the year.

Some sites still receive most visits from desktop users, however, with tech retailer Ebuyer.com managing to maintain almost two thirds of its audience on PCs and laptops.

Falling visitor numbers is not necessarily an issue as long as retailers can make sure that more people convert on their first visit.