Online sales of non-food products in the UK grew 17.6 per cent in June versus a year earlier, when it had risen by 10.6 per cent over the previous year.
This is the best online performance since August 2014 and outperformed the three-month and 12-month averages of 14.6 per cent and 12.6 per cent, respectively, says the British Retail Consortium (BRC) and KPMG.
Online sales contributed 2.1 percentage points to the growth of non-food total sales in June. Compared to physical stores, online now consistently contributes more to three-month average non-food sales growth, and over the three months to June 2015 made its greatest percentage contribution since December 2013.
However, sales of entertainment electricals continued to struggle. TVs sales were poor compared to the same period last year, when the World Cup was taking place.
"There were no major technology launches in June, and the market for tablets continued to be saturated," said BRC in a statement.
Online growth in household appliances was supported by the small electricals segment, in particular fans and cooling units as the weather played its part towards the end of the month. Promotional offers on small appliances also helped to support demand for this category.
Helen Dickinson, Director General for the BRC, said: “As ever, websites are popular during the sales, providing greater clarity of stock availability for consumers.
"Online sales strength is also shown in the fact its contribution to three month non-food sales growth has reached its highest proportion since December 2013. This highlights the variety of digitally focused roles in the retail industry. It also shows the increasing demand for skilled people to develop sophisticated online operations and a seamless connection between physical and digital space.”
UK retail sales overall (including store sales) increased 1.8 per cent on a like-for-like basis from June 2014, when they had decreased 0.8 per cent on the preceding year. On a total basis, sales were up 2.9 per cent, against a 0.6 per cent rise in June 2014. This is the strongest growth since January 2014, excluding Easter distortions.
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