UK online sales of non-food products were up 10.6% year-over-year in June, less than June 2013's 12.5% yearly rise; online sales comprised 17.2% of total non-food sales in June, up from 15.9% in June 2013: British Retail Consortium

LONDON , July 17, 2014 (press release) – Online sales of Non-Food products in the UK grew 10.6% in June versus a year earlier. In June 2013, they had increased by 12.5% over the previous year. This is the lowest online growth recorded since July 2013.

In June, online sales represented 17.2% of total Non-Food sales of our Monitor, against 15.9% in June 2013. June's penetration was greater than its 3-month average, at 16.7%.

Excluding Health & Beauty, Footwear was the only category to report growth above the total 3-month and 12-month averages. Indeed, there was a strong contribution of online to UK Footwear sales last month. Toys & Baby Equipment – reported for the first time in this release – performed ahead of Clothing and the home categories.

Online sales contributed 1.4 percentage points to the growth of Non-Food total sales. When compared to the UK total sales growth of 0.6% last month, this can be viewed as a strong online performance.

Helen Dickinson, Director General, British Retail Consortium, said: "Despite online growth of non-food items having increased at its lowest rate since July 2013, the proportion of online sales keeps increasing. This is due to the enhanced online shopping experience which retailers have worked hard to provide for their customers. Retailer's sophisticated multichannel propositions are especially convenient for shoppers who do not want to brave busy stores during the summer sale season. This means that people can browse leisurely for goods online, through their mobiles, desktops or tablets, in the comfort of their own home or on the move. Online sales also include shoppers buying online and collecting in-store which often incorporates the best of both worlds as customers can collect at their convenience instead of waiting at home for the delivery and will often take the opportunity of a top up purchase.

"Scale is becoming a key differentiating factor for the online market. Large retailers with a more advanced online services proposition and able to utilise efficient distribution and logistics can now offer on their website brands from other retailers who don't have sufficient scale online."

David McCorquodale, Head of Retail, KPMG, said: "The blazing summer sun proved too much of a distraction for shoppers in June and online sales growth slowed to the lowest level seen in a year. However, the summer months are traditionally a weaker time for online sales and this slowdown will not give retailers too much cause for concern. The onus is on retailers to better connect with consumers online and deliver innovative, personalised campaigns which will capture the average shopper's imagination and encourage them to spend online and in store. With a summer of sport, festivals and local events taking place across the country, there are numerous opportunities for retailers to link online campaigns with the great outdoors and regain the attention of shoppers."
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