Strongest online sales growth between August and September in 13 years

Executive Summary

  • Index up 20% year-on-year and 13% on August
  • Steepest monthly rise between August and September in 13-year history of Index
  • Almost a quarter of mobile sales were through smartphones
  • Q3 online sales were up 15% year-on-year, in line with revised forecast
  • Average basket value highest in 15 months

17th October 2013: Figures from the IMRG Capgemini e-Retail Sales Index reveal the online retail market recorded a rise between August and September of 13%, the highest growth for this period in the 13-year history of the Index.

This is the second Index-lifetime record seen this year, following the first negative online growth ever recorded between June and July (-2%), though that was heavily influenced by the prolonged heat-wave in the UK.

Overall the Index was up 20% year-on-year in September, as online sales continue to rise ahead of expectation, driven by the increasing use of mobile devices as part of the purchase journey.

There was further positive news in the run-up to the Christmas peak period as the average basket value reached its highest point since June 2012.

The Index also revealed that almost a quarter of mobile device sales (23%) were through smartphones in September. IMRG and Capgemini split tablet and smartphone sales in August for the first time, when smartphones only accounted for 15% of mobile device sales. It is too early to identify a trend yet, but this will be monitored with interest over the coming months.

The clothing sector recorded a sharp 18% rise compared to this time last year, and the highest growth rate for this sector since June.  In particular, a number of sectors recorded strong growth levels including lingerie (30%) accessories (20%) and footwear (20%). The electrical sector has also picked up in terms of year-on-year growth, following periods of low growth over the summer, the result of sales of new technologies and next generation smartphones.

Chris Webster, VP, Head of Retail Consulting and Technology at Capgemini: “This month’s Index is a good indicator that we are headed towards economic recovery, and a great sign for a strong Christmas. The fact that e-retail has seen its sharpest period of growth for September suggests that consumers are shopping with confidence. In addition, September’s three year high in the average clothing basket value is a clear sign that retailers are selling through at full price, giving even more confidence to the economic recovery.

Tina Spooner, Chief Information Officer at IMRG: “The latest Index results are encouraging as we enter the fourth quarter, with retailers preparing for the crucial festive trading period. The record monthly growth in September is an indication of increasing consumer confidence and with smartphone year-on-year sales growth reaching an impressive 150%, it is also evident that shoppers are becoming more comfortable with shopping via their mobile devices.  Year-to-date the UK e-retail sector has grown 16% compared with the same period in 2012 and we anticipate the sector will continue to record double-digit growth during Q4.

Notes:

About the ‘IMRG Capgemini e-Retail Sales Index’
The IMRG Capgemini Index, which was started in April 2000, tracks 'online sales', which we define as 'transactions completed fully, including payment, via interactive channels' from any location, including in-store. 

Over one hundred e-retailers now regularly contribute data to the IMRG Capgemini Index, including A. Hume Country Clothing, Addict, Airport Parking & Hotels Ltd, Amara, Arcadia Group (Burton, Top Man, Top Shop, Dorothy Perkins, Evans, Wallis, Miss Selfridge), Ask Direct, ASOS.com, B&Q, Bank, Berry Bros & Rudd,  Binends.com, Blacks, Boden.co.uk, Boohoo.com, Boots Direct, Boutique to You, Brora, Buyagift.com, Carphone Warehouse, Charles Tyrwhitt,  Clarks, Cocosa, Crocus.co.uk, Dabs.com, Damart, Debenhams, Dune, Dunelm Mill, Effortless Skin, Ethical Superstore, Firebox, First Choice, Freemans Grattan Holdings (Freemans, Grattan, Look Again, Kaleidoscope, Curvissa, Swimear365, Witt International UK), Game, Gamestation, Get The Label, Getting Personal.co.uk, Greenfingers.com, Home & Cook, JD Sports, J D Williams, John Lewis Partnership, Ladderstore.com, Lastminute.com, LK Bennett, Lookfantastic.com, M and M Direct, Majestic Wine, Marks & Spencer, Matalan, Millets, Moss Bros, Naked Wines, NaturalCollection.com, New Look, Next, Perfect Handbags Perricone MD, PetPlanet.co.uk, Philip Kingsley, PIXmania, Prezzybox.com, Purely Gadgets, QVC, Redfoot Revolution, Richer Sounds, Sainsbury’s, Scales Express, Schuh, Scotlight Direct, Scott, Shoe-Shop.com, Shop Direct Home Shopping (Brand Quarter, Kays, Littlewoods, Very, Isme, Woolworths), Serenata Flowers, Size, Sofa and Home, Sparkling Strawberry, Sunshine.co.uk, SuperGA, Tesco.com, The Body Shop,  The Mat Factory, The Natural Skincare Co, The Natural Store, The White Company, This is Pulp, ToxicFox, TUI UK, Turton Wines, Waitrose, Wilkinson Hardware & Wynsors World of Shoes.

About IMRG
IMRG (Interactive Media in Retail Group) is the UK’s industry association for e-retail. Formed in 1990, IMRG is setting and maintaining pragmatic and robust e-retail standards to enable fast-track industry growth, and facilitates its community of members with practical help, information, tools, guidance and networking. The strength of IMRG is the collective and cooperative power of its members. For more information please visit http://www.imrg.org/ or email membership@imrg.org 

About Capgemini
With more than 125,000 people in 44 countries, Capgemini is one of the world's foremost providers of consulting, technology and outsourcing services. The Group reported 2012 global revenues of EUR 10.3 billion. Together with its clients, Capgemini creates and delivers business and technology solutions that fit their needs and drive the results they want. A deeply multicultural organization, Capgemini has developed its own way of working, the Collaborative Business ExperienceTM, and draws on Rightshore®, its worldwide delivery model.

Learn more about us at www.capgemini.com.

Rightshore® is a trademark belonging to Capgemini

Mobile & Channel Development / Trends & Performance / 17/10/2013 /
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