Online Retail Sales To Reach £4.6bn In First Two Weeks Of December

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UK online retailers are on track to see strong sales in the run-up to Christmas as consumers are preparing to dig deep into their pockets at the start of December, the latest e-Retail Sales Index from IMRG and Capgemini suggests.

UK consumers are predicted to spend £4.6 billion in the first two weeks of December to buy products online, whch is 15% more when compared with the same period last year, thus contributing 26%-27% to the total volume of e-commerce trade during the last nine weeks of 2012, I read on IMRG’s website.

About £920 million is expected to come from sales conducted through smartphones and tablets, 20% of the total. By comparison, mobile devices generated 8.2% of online retail sales in the first three months of the current year. The growth could be explained with the increasing popularity of such gadgets among UK shoppers, which has been gaining speed since the start of 2012.

M-commerce fever is further driven by “second-screening”, when consumers search for products seen on TV. The latest study from eDigitalResearch and IMRG showed that 80% of smartphone and tablet owners keep their devices on hand when watching TV, which means that the share of people shopping via their mobile will keep rising next year, IMRG’s CIO Tina Spooner commented.

According to the report, the busiest weeks around Christmas will be those starting on 3 December and 10 December, which is a week later than last year. This is because most people will receive their salaries after 26 November, the final Monday in November.