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UK online sales grew by 13.3% in April: ONS

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UK online sales grew by 13.3% in April, compared to the previous year, new official figures showed today.

At the same time, total UK retail sales, which are mostly made in shops, grew at their fastest rate for a decade, growing by 6.2% in value compared to the same month last year, and by 6.9% in volume, according to the ONS’ Retail Sales Index for April 2014. Some £28bn was spent over the course of the month – an average of £7bn each week, while an average of £707.5m was spent online each week. That equates to 11% of all retail spending, excluding automative fuel.

As with previous months, some sectors saw online sales grow more rapidly than others. Department stores, for example, saw their ecommerce sales climb by 30.3% over the month, compared to last year, and now account for 10.5% of all their sales.

Textiles, clothing and footwear internet sales grew by 13.5%, accounting for 10.8% of all sales in the sector, while in the household goods sector, online sales grew by 1.6% to account for 5.6% of all sales. Food sales grew by 15.4% but still account for only 3.6% of the market.

The Retail Sales Index data comes from a monthly survey of 5,000 British retail businesses, including the 900 largest and a panel representing smaller businesses who together cover about 90% of the industry in terms of turnover.

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