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Online will ‘level out’ at a quarter of all retail sales, says ParcelHero

UK internet sales will be worth around £12.8 billion annually, says the ecommerce company.

Home delivery expert, ParcelHero is predicting that online will level out at a quarter of all retail sales, as more shoppers head back to the high street.

This would mean that UK internet sales will be worth around £12.8 billion annually.

“Our figure of 25% is a significant fall from the 36.1% of all retail sales that online grabbed last February at the height of lockdown,” commented David Jinks, head of consumer research at ParcelHero. “However, it’s still a huge increase on the 19% share online used to take, before the pandemic permanently shook up retail.

“For some months now, retailers have been trying to guess what the new normal will look like. We believe the picture has now become a lot clearer. The cash registers have certainly been ringing more frequently in stores ever since non-essential shops returned to life on 12 April, but ParcelHero’s own research shows that 46% of consumers have no intention of returning to their pre-Covid, High Street spending levels. Indeed, July saw a decrease in retail footfall compared to June.”

David continued: “Online sales fell 4.7% in June compared to May, and they have been falling every month since March, but not at such a rate as to indicate shoppers have abandoned their new online spending habits. As a result, everyone has been trying to assess the new ‘natural order’ and it’s looking like online will permanently secure around a quarter of all retail spending.”

David highlighted that, at the peak of the pandemic, Amazon was experiencing growth of 41%. In contrast, its gross revenues for next quarter are expected to grow ‘just’ 10% to 16%. Despite this being a big slowdown, the continued projected growth indicates that shoppers will keep their online habit.

David continued: “ParcelHero anticipates there will be something of spending spree on our high streets during August, as everyone enjoys the ‘Great British Staycation’. However, the return of colder weather this autumn will likely see new concerns about Covid-19, flu and other illnesses.

“Everything points towards long-term equilibrium, with online spending maintaining a 25% hold on the UK’s overall £51.4 billion retail spend.”

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