Online retail growth back to double-digit in April

Online retail sales grew 13% year on year in April following an unprecedented four months of single-digit growth, according to new figures from the IMRG Capgemini e-Retail Sales Index.

April sales were up 4% month-on-month – a marked shift in the usual established trend of flat monthly growth between March and April, and the highest recorded for this period since 2007.

Improvements in average temperatures seemed to provide a boost to clothing – where sales growth was up 15%, its best performance in 2015 so far.

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Mobile continued to drive overall online sales growth. April’s figures show that mobile sales increased 52% year-on-year and 8% on March.

IMRG chief information officer said: “The return to double-digit growth during April has resulted in overall growth of 9% year-to-date for the UK online retail market. The latest results also reveal that online browsers converted at the highest rate for April since 2009 – helping to fuel the 3.9% month-on-month rise between March and April, where the established trend is for flat growth.

“A separate survey of IMRG members has revealed that UK retailers believe a number of factors influenced the slowdown in e-retail growth during Q1 including market maturity, increased competition, less discounting resulting in consumers holding out for sales and promotions and also political and economic uncertainty. However, it is too early to say whether the single-digit growth recorded during Q1 was merely a blip and we will be monitoring developments very closely over the coming months.”



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