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E-tailers tempt Brit shoppers off the street

Growth rate accelerates

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British shoppers are being lured off the high street and onto the internet. Data from the Interactive Media in Retail Group (IMRG) reveals web shopping grew 30 per cent in April, the biggest year-on-year increase for seven months.

E-tailers benefited at the expense of bricks and mortar stores, IMRG said. The internet sales growth rate tripled from 13.4 per cent in February compared to a 4.2 per cent dip on the high street.

The report shows seven per cent of all retail activity took place online last month with net consumers spending £1.374bn.

James Roper, from IMRG, said: "This...data shows e-retail's resilience in tough trading conditions. It also signals that we are finally seeing the end of rip-off Britain.

"UK consumers know that many high street retailers have for years enjoyed very high profit margins while providing mediocre service, and they still have the impression that they are being ripped off by cartels using cynical price fixing methods.

"[Consumers] are voting with their keyboards for the convenience of shopping online with brands they trust and which consistently give good value and service."

IMRG predicts that by April 2010 online shopping will have expanded by 320 per cent, represent £60bn per year and account for 20 oer cent of all UK retail sales.

Official figures, released last week, showed high street sales increased 0.5 per cent in April.

IMRG's press release is here.

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