The fast-paced growth of e-commerce outpaced and stunted sales on British high streets in November, a new industry report claims.
E-commerce delivery specialist ParcelCompare says November’s modest high street sales increase of 1.6% was dwarfed by the rise in online sales, which saw a boost of 10.2% compared to the same period last year.
While national discount events Black Friday and Cyber Monday contributed to growth in both sectors of retail, securing a healthy 4.7% increase in the amount spent compared to November 2016, ParcelCompare says town centre stores should not rest on their laurels, as online sales pose a potential threat to the future of in-store shopping.
ParcelCompare’s head of consumer research, David Jinks, said: “Electrical product retailers in particular seem to be dancing a little jig about how well November sales have gone. I hate to sound like Scrooge, but the pre-Christmas sales rise is humbug compared to the steep climb in online sales.
“The double digit rise in online spending in November comes at the price of High Street sales – decent Black Friday or not. In November the average weekly spending online was £1.2 billion; compared with £1.08bn in November 2016. Online spending now accounts for 17% of all retail sales – and that’s a figure that is only ever going to go up.”
While many shoppers are preparing for the festive season by taking full advantage of November’s bumper sales events, it has also been reported that UK shoppers are likely to wait until the 11th hour to start their shopping.