Retail sales hold steady as internet sales push ahead

Internet retail sales jump and high street sales remain stable as shoppers look for good deals online and off.

By News Desk
20th February 2009 at 10:33

Retail sales in January 2009 hold firm as internet shopping boomsSeasonally adjusted retail sales for the three months to end January have seen no change, although discounting in some sectors and the continuing rise in purchases made over the internet, mean there are winners and losers in the latest official statistics.

Figures from the Office of National Statistics released today reveal the volume of sales in the three months to January actually rose by 1.5% with household goods, repair and non-store retailing performing particularly well.

Ongoing discounting will also be playing a part in keeping shoppers shopping, although not doing much for the profitability of the retail sector right now.

The biggest winner again seems to be online retailing.  

The non-store (largely comprised of internet) and repair sectors saw sales rise 8.3% the biggest since records began in 1986.

Clearly people are fixing things, rather than buying new and shopping online for the best deals.

New figures from the Office of National Statistics, which come with a few health warnings because they’ve only recently been developed, show that internet retail sales now represent 3.7% of overall retail sales.

This is equivalent to an online spend of £178 million per week during January this year.

The online retail sales percentage has been growing steadily from 3.1% in January 2008 to 3.5% in December and now 3.7%.


[Picture credit: turtlemom4bacon licenced from Flickr]

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