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Ecommerce UK: worst November growth since ’11

Things don’t look so swell for ecommerce in the United Kingdom. The online retail industry has suffered the worst November growth since 2011. Last month, sales increased with just 8.1 percent year-on-year.


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This is shown by the most recent IMRG Capgemini e-Retail Sales Index. The new growth numbers suggest that Asos’ disappointing figures earlier this week weren’t just an unexpected deviation. The growth of ecommerce in the UK in November fell below the three-, six- and twelve-month sales growth averages, while the industry suffered its all-time lowest growth for a Black Friday week.

“Black Friday was underwhelming from a revenue perspective this year and there are multiple reasons why shopper spend may not have responded as well as may have been expected”, Andy Mulcahy of IMRG says. “There is economic and political stability potentially impacting shopper confidence, plus the possibility that people might be becoming fatigued with the event – a factor compounded by negative stories released in the run-up.”

Heavy discounting led to disappointing November

The fact some heavy discounting had been going on far in advance of Black Friday, might also have something to do with the disappointing month. “It’s a very complicated story this year, but the duration and depth of discounting rates are likely to be very significant”, Mulcahy adds.

The influence of discounts is also something Capgemini considers as a major factor in the worrying November figures. “Despite high conversion this month where all weeks saw an increase in orders, the drop in average basket value has impacted the sales growth, suggesting that extended promotions have had an impact on revenue this year”, Bhavesh Unadkat of Capgemini says.

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