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Online sales soar in UK despite Brexit
Jul '16
Notwithstanding the looming economic uncertainty and predictions of plummeting consumer confidence after the historic Brexit vote, online sales in Great Britain registered 17 % YoY growth in June with clothing performing strongly, according to the IMRG Capgemini eRetail Sales Index.

Online sales across the clothing category performed strongly in June with the lingerie section going up 41%, accessories going up 46% and footwear up 34% -- a five-year high. Apparel as a whole was also up 18% YoY, showed the IMRG (Interactive Media Retail Group) Index, which has been tracking e-retailers in UK for more than 20 years.

However, sales of beer, wines and spirits tumbled during the month-7% as did Health and beauty sales which fell by -5% - its weakest performance in six years.

The Index recorded a month-on-month (MoM) growth rate of 2%, similar to last year's growth rate and building on an extremely strong May 2016, when the Index recorded its highest YoY growth rate in 11 months.

The average basket value of goods purchased online was also up, from £75.11 in June 2015, to £80.34 a year later - continuing the general witnessed so far in 2016.

In mobile retail, however, the growth of sales made on tablets continued to nosedive, with YoY growth at just 0.4%. This is the lowest figure registered since YoY monitoring began in 2013. Conversely, sales on smartphones grew 69% YoY, following extremely strong growth of 117% YoY in June 2015, according to the figures released by Capgemini, the market research and consulting group on Tuesday.

While the Index results reveal a strong performance during June, it is too early to say whether the Brexit vote will have any long-term impact on the UK's online retail sector, observed Tina Spooner, Chief Information Officer, at IMRG.

However, early signs from a recent IMRG poll of retailers found that around two-thirds of online merchants saw a slowdown in sales in the few days after the EU referendum, but most of them reported that sales appeared to recover to “normal” levels again afterwards.

Bhavesh Unadkat, Management Consultant in Retail Customer Engagement Design, Capgemini: said it was great to see that, both in the run up to the referendum and in the immediate aftermath, online sales growth remained strong.

He, however, cautioned that these figures didn't encapsulate the entire Brexit fallout, and the full impact of the referendum could not be wholly analysed before several months. “In the meantime, retailers need to continue to focus on ensuring they give their customers every reason to shop with them,” he advised. (SH)

Fibre2Fashion News Desk – India

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