Superfast broadband helps grow online sales
The roll-out of superfast broadband is spurring growth in online sales – whose value could rise by £740m a year by 2017, a new study suggests.
Analysis for the Royal Mail
by the Centre for Economic and Business Research
found that online shoppers have already spent an extra £225m since taking up superfast broadband – which translates into spending of an extra £23 per user, or 3.1%.
The study estimates that once the roll-out reaches the target 90% to 95% of the population by 2017, an extra £515m a year in online sales could be added, resulting in an ecommerce windfall of £740m a year as a result of the introduction of superfast broadband.
Nick Landon, managing director of Royal Mail Parcels, said: “Superfast broadband is acting as a catalyst, encouraging people to spend more online and the further roll-out of networks across Britain over the coming years can only benefit the online retailing market.”
The study found that the amount shoppers spent once connected to superfast broadband varied across the UK. Scottish and Welsh shoppers respectively spent 5.1% and 4.4% more, while those in the South West spent 1.4% more. Interestingly, Scotland and Wales have less dense populations, with 68 people per sq km in Scotland and 148 people/sq km in Wales, compared to 409 people/sq km in England. That, suggested the report, meant distances from large shopping centres were likely to be greater outside England, making online shopping even more convenient. Meanwhile, it suggested, the South West had the highest average age of residents, a group that might be less comfortable shopping online.Image:
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