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E-commerce's downwards trend continues for 26th month in a row

Chloe Burney
11 July 2023

According to IMRG's Online Retail Index, which tracks the online sales performance of 200 retailers in the UK, June saw online retail revenue dip by 1.2% year-on-year – the 26th month in a row that growth has been negative or flat.

Interactive Media in Retail Group (IMRG) reported that from a month-on-month perspective, total online market revenue increased by 1.4% in June, which is in line with the expected spike as we move into summer.

Despite the decrease in revenues, the traffic metric was up by 1.9% year-on-year, after seven months of decline. This was even more promising month-on-month, with traffic increasing by 5.4% from May. This reveals greater customer demand, perhaps due to communal celebrations such as Father’s Day and Pride.

Increased traffic may have been boosted thanks to this year's weather. It took until June for consistently warm weather to arrive this year, and when it did, it was the hottest June on record. This had a large impact on demand and shoppers looked for weather-appropriate products, such as SPF.

Andy Mulcahy, Strategy and Insight Director at IMRG, commented: "Following the pandemic boom, when lockdowns drove huge surges in online purchases and it appeared possible that its penetration into retail overall had rocketed forward several years, the market has actually been in decline ever since.

"However, while negative growth has become normalised, the trend lines are heading back toward positive growth again, likely in time for the most important time of the year for retail – Black Friday and Christmas. Provided, of course, the looming mortgage crisis doesn’t blow everything off target again."

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