The state of retail online shopping in UK: January 2011 report

Shoppers in the United Kingdom spent 5.1 billion pounds ($8.3 billion) online in January, up 21% from one year prior, according to the latest figures from consultant Capgemini and Interactive Media in Retail Group (IMRG), a web retailing industry association.The travel sector generated some of the largest growth, as more shoppers took advantage of seasonal discounts on vacation packages. “Travel is one of the sectors of the U.K. economy that saw the earliest adoption of the Internet as an initial point of purchase and this trend shows no sign of abating,” says Phillip Rinn, director of advertising partnerships at eBay Advertising.

January travel sales were up 31% compared with the same month in 2009, and the average value of trips purchased was 886 British pounds ($1,439), the highest recorded in over two years. Many of those winter-weary travellers also bought luggage online, says Russ Carroll, U.K. managing director of comparing shopping site “ saw sales of luggage rise by over 20%,” Carroll says, “as many consumers decided they needed to get away from the miserable British weather.”

Hefty discounts offered by furniture chains also contributed to strong results for online home and garden retailers, as shoppers spent 56% more at these e-commerce sites in January than the year prior, according to IMRG results. “Home, on the back of our Clearance offer, had a very strong month with sales up over 30% on 2010,” says Jonathon Brown, head of online selling at general merchandise retailer John Lewis.

Alcohol sales dropped 67%, which IMRG attributed to shoppers’ desire to cut back after holiday excesses in December (Source: Stefany Moore for

6 thoughts on “The state of retail online shopping in UK: January 2011 report

  1. Essentially the most interesting idea I have come across is coupon trains. A coupon train in most cases consists of 6-8 people. The primary person inside the train puts a specified amount of coupons in an envelope and mails it to the first person on the list. That person then takes out what coupons they can use and leaves the rest. They also add an equal or greater amount of coupons into the envelope to replace what they took out, then mails it for the subsequent person on the list. As soon as it gets for the last person, they do the same thing, then mail it back to the original sender. This is decent should you can trade with people across the country as the same coupons may possibly not be found in all provinces.

    1. Interesting suggestion, Bijenkorf. Mail couponing is a marketing strategy which differs from country to country. For instance, in Italy it does not work as much as in the USA, because Italians do not have the “coupon culture”.
      I must admit that your idea of having them sent by a friend and not by a company is a very good one, this might convince even the most skeptical Italian!

  2. If you have a variety of complimentary goods then you could readily use coupons to cross-cell the related items to your customers. For example, suppose a person buys a digital camera from your site it is easy to give a coupon for the buy of an extra media card or flash card.

  3. Evaluation your spending habits; come up using a program for organizing your coupons in order that you understand what you have got; master your preferred store’s policies relating to coupons and also their sale cycles, and come across coupons anyplace you probable can! It can be time consuming to produce essentially the most out of working with coupons, but the savings is usually properly worth the effort.

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