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Mobile Pushes UK to Record e-Christmas

Sales via a mobile device doubled since last Christmas

UK business-to-consumer (B2C) ecommerce sales soared in 2013, rising 16% year over year. During December 2013, such sales increased even more, growing 18% compared with December 2012, according to the Interactive Media in Retail Group (IMRG). Clothing and electrical sales were particularly strong over Christmas.

IMRG estimated that £91 billion (more than $142.18 billion) was spent online in the UK in 2013, with mobile sales increasing by 138% in total. Of those mobile sales, 82% came from a tablet, although smartphone sales grew more quickly—186%, compared with 131% for tablets.

Compared with other comparable territories, the UK was the top country for retail ecommerce sales around the holiday period, according to Adobe estimates. UK consumers spent more than one-quarter of total ecommerce sales in 2013 during the two heaviest shopping months of November and December, beating the Nordic regions, which tend to exceed the UK in mobile web use, the US, Germany and France.

Two of the most popular days to shop were Boxing Day and Cyber Monday. Of course, consumers were shifting attention to digital forms of many products, such as music.

While UK consumers continue to gravitate to ecommerce, they are doing so particularly at Christmas, making the holiday very much a digital event.

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