After the financial doom and gloom that has shrouded the nation for the past year or so, this morning’s announcement that we are out of recession will come as a welcome respite. However, for online retailers 2009 has been a bumper year, with a 14% year on year increase.
We may now be able to consign phrases like credit crunch to the jargon bin, but it appears that while the nation’s wealth has only been increased by 0.1%, online retailers have been experiencing bumper profits. £5.46 billion was spent online in December alone, which represents a 17% increase on the same period last year.
According to the latest IMRG Capgemini e-Retail Sales Index, consumers have purchased 14% more online in 2009 than they did the year before. Positive movements have been seen in almost every sector, which goes someway to show just how dependent we are on the Internet and how keen we are to take advantage of its convenience.
These findings are impressive, particularly in light of the tumultuous time Britons have had throughout 2009. Not only was the credit crunch recession in full swing, but there were postal strikes, widespread redundancies and freak weather to contend with; however, despite all this though, online usage growth has continued unabated.
Now, perhaps more than ever, it is essential for bricks and mortar retailers to have an Internet presence. As these figures show, the market is huge, but the potential market is even bigger. Whilst the growth in purchases may also mirror the spreading of sites, it also highlights the importance of establishing yourself online as well as off. This means gaining visibility and building your customer base through satisfaction and reputation.