UK eCommerce sector forecasted to double in value
More good news for the UK eCommerce sector: according to the results of a major new study, it’s projected to double in size by 2018. Already, the sector is worth more than £100 billion, a milestone figure reached last year as increasing numbers of people do their shopping online instead of in real-world stores.
Shopping on eCommerce sites totalled £104 billion in 2014, a 14% increase on the previous year, according to data from the IMRG Capgemini e-Retail Sales Index. It forecast that UK eCommerce would grow by 12% in 2015 and said the thriving sector now makes up almost a quarter (24%) of the country’s retail economy.
One out of every five pounds is currently being spent online in the UK, making eCommerce fulfilment busier than ever. This news comes as the four main digital shopping markets look set to reach a combined value of a record £645 billion, according to figures crunched in a study carried out by Google, PayPal and OC&C Strategy Consultants, a global business advisory firm. Those markets are the UK along with the US, China and Germany.
Online shopping sites in Britain are particularly attractive to the Germans as well as the Chinese, who are drawn to British-made products because they perceive them as being higher in quality than similar products elsewhere, according to the research. Other attractions include better prices on UK sites and the availability of unique items that are not in shoppers’ own countries.
The IMRG Capgemini e-Retail Sales Index began tracking online sales just as the sector started – back in 2000. Since then, growth has ballooned by an incredible 11,000% and it’s believed that around £640 billion has been digitally spent during those early 15 years. Analysts say that as the UK economy continues to recover from recent years of slump, consumers are feeling more confident about spending, and more of them are doing it online.
They also said that while UK online retailers are doing well domestically, not enough of them are paying attention to overseas markets – but those that do are perfectly poised to reap even richer eCommerce rewards.
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