E-retail sales to surge 17% this year

The annual value of the UK e-retail market will soar to £69 billion this year as consumers continue to turn to the internet for their shopping needs, new figures suggest.

Consumers will spend 17% more online in 2011 than they did last year when the market was worth £58.8 billion, according to Interactive Media in Retail Group (IMRG), an industry body for the e-commerce trade.

10 years ago, at the beginning of its ascendency, the e-tail market was worth just £800m.

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IMRG, which publishes a regular e-retail sales index in association with tech firm Capgemini, says that the strongest performing sectors of the e-retail market continue to be clothing and electrical. Both have recorded consistently strong growth over the last decade.

“An estimated £300 billion has been spent online in the UK during the 11 years that our Index has been tracking the e-retail market, and with around £70 billion estimated to be spent this year, we expect that figure to easily double within four years,” said James Roper, CEO at IMRG.

“With 80% of the UK population now online and government plans to extend the speed and geographical reach of broadband services, we anticipate a continued acceleration of growth irrespective of the economic situation as a whole,” he added.

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