While UK physical store owners had it rough in 2018’s first half, web-based merchants experienced sales growth beyond industry expectations according to recent statistics.

Tracking web-based sales since 2000, the Capgemini IMRG eRetail Sales Index released 2018’s first-half results which showed sales grew16.8 percent yearly. That figure marked the highest H1 yearly growth from 2011. It also placed H1 online sales throughout the period comfortably over the half-decade record of 14.1 percent.

What’s more, the average basket worth for 2018’ first half was at its peak for an entire ten years at £94 outperforming the half-decade average of £85 despite the steady drop of online retail conversion rates in every month except May.

The primary sponsors of the survey, IMRG (Interactive Media in Retail Group) and Capgemini explained that the findings could be the result of the growing trend of shopping through smartphones, which makes up a more significant portion of total eCommerce sales but records low conversion rates.

According to this study, spending through smartphones went up 39 percent in Q2 in comparison to last year’s performance in the same quarter.

Reports from the study and retail merchant services complaints showed that other than the surge of smartphones and their impact on eCommerce sales, the unusual weather conditions experienced in the UK this year also impacted on the findings.

eCommerce sales grew by 15.3 percent yearly during the cold season between January and March. But the hot April weather also discouraged buyers from the high street.

Nevertheless, the unpredictable weather worked to the advantage of some retail categories, like the clothing and the garden sectors. Gardening went up 24.9 percent year-on-year as of 2014, while clothing went up16.3 percent in Q1 and 17.8 percent in Q2.

Winter in Q1 was the perfect weather for the health and beauty to record an 18.6 percent yearly growth, plummeting slightly to 17.7 percent in the whole of Q1.

“The year kicked off with a lot of gloom and vagueness around retail,” said Bhavesh Unadkat, Expert in retail customer relations at Capgemini. “What’s encouraging is how well e-retail has performed in 2018’s first half, more so in seasonal categories, e.g., the Garden and Clothing sectors.”

The e-retail adoption rates (for H1 2018) by UK shoppers surpassed the industry predictions.  Andy Mulcahy, strategy director at IMRG also felt the same stating that e-retail for H1 was “a lot stronger than expected.”


Now we look forward to more growth as experts behind every pillar supporting UK’s e-retail work to improve conditions for retailers and their customers.

Author Bio:Payment industry expert Taylor Cole is a passionate merchant account expert who understands the complicated world of accepting credit and debit cards at your business. His understanding of retail merchant services complaintshas helped thousands of business owners save money and time. 


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