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By Scott Thompson

The Capgemini IMRG eRetail results for January 2011 show a widening gap between multi-channel retailers and their pureplay rivals. Shoppers in the UK spent a total of £5.1 billion online during January, 21 per cent more than the same time last year.

The results paint a varied picture of the performance of online businesses, with multi-channel retailers making the most of their brand and physical presence to secure a greater share of spending. Both multi-channel and online only (including catalogue) retailers declined at a similar rate from December, -24 per cent and -27 per cent respectively, but in terms of year-on-year, multi-channel jumped 30 per cent, while online grew just eight per cent compared with January 2010. Shoppers spent on average £195 in January with multi-channel retailers, compared to just £92 with online only; equating to a year-on-year average basket value change of two per cent for multi-channel and a decline of -27 per cent for online only.

Tina Spooner, director of information at IMRG, comments: “While the Index results for January show a very encouraging start to the year for e-retailers, it is important to note this strong growth is on the back of the lowest-ever annual growth recorded in January last year when the e-retail market grew just 4.6 per cent. Multi-channel retailers performed well last month with sales growing by almost a third compared with January last year, but the pureplays and catalogue retailers saw annual growth dip to eight per cent, following a year of steady growth in 2010.”



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