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UK’s retail market enjoys period of growth

24 July 2017 - 14:08 by Graham Miller

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Over the course of June there was a healthy 5.7 per cent increase in sales across all retail platforms, according to figures published last week by the Office for National Statistics.

When it comes to safe shopping online, sales leapt upwards by 15.9 per cent, enabling e-commerce to make up 16.2 per cent of the market as a whole.

ONS spokesperson, Kate Davies, said that the higher temperatures last month helped convince consumers to snap up summery fashion items and outdoor accessories, although this trend was counterbalanced by a dip in grocery sales.

She also explained that while June was a strong month on the whole, 2017 has been relatively muted in terms of sales growth, even with the ongoing increase in safe shopping online.

A similar study from IMRG, also published last week, put a less positive spin on the state of play. It suggests that online growth was at just 9.5 per cent; almost a record low.

Part of the reason for this is thought to be the fact that Amazon’s popular Prime Day discount event was scheduled for July, meaning that many shoppers chose to hold off on making any purchases in June to get the best deals further down the line.

It will be interesting to see how much July’s sales figures have been impacted by Prime Day, especially as Amazon rated it as one of its biggest ever days for sales worldwide.

This fact might prompt more questions to be raised about the dominance of Amazon in the UK’s e-commerce market, since if it is capable of having such a significant effect on sales from month to month, it could be argued that it has too much of a monopoly and is stifling competition, which puts consumers in an unenviable position.