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Zara experiences benefits of online shopping after e-commerce launch

24 September 2010 - 15:29 by Sarah Collinson

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High street fashion franchise Zara recently launched its first online shopping outlet and the parent company of this retail giant has said that early figures suggest that the e-commerce outing will be a big success.

The online version of Zara opened its virtual doors at the start of September in the UK and five other nations worldwide, with five additional countries getting the same treatment before the end of 2010.

Spanish owner Inditex has announced that its income for the first half of the year will have grown by 68 per cent, compared to the same period in the last year and customer feedback from the online store, which has products from the high street outlets at identical price brackets, has apparently been positive.

Retain trend analyst Anne Critchlow said that Inditex's performance in 2010 indicated that consumers were becoming more confident in spending their disposable income, as the impact of the recent global recession recedes.

Total sales recorded by Inditex grew by 14 per cent to £4.6 billion between January and July of this year, while sales in August and September were also showing a healthy performance, with a 10 per cent increase year on year.

As well as offering safe shopping online to its customers in the UK and elsewhere, Zara and its parent company have been pushing into the Asian market, with new high street shops and plans for an e-commerce presence that will allow them to compete with incumbent rivals.

The initial success of the Zara online shopping portal has been partly fuelled because users are able to make purchases not only from their desktop PCs, but also from their mobile devices. Offering safe shopping online across a range of connected platforms, is seen as the way forward for e-commerce firms.