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Online retail sales up 37% in November after Black Friday surge

Online retail sales rose by 37% month-on-month in November according to figures released in the latest IMRG Capgemini e-Retail Sales Index.


Online retail sales up 37% in November after Black Friday surge

Online retail sales rose by 37% month-on-month in November according to figures released in the latest IMRG Capgemini e-Retail Sales Index.

The figure represents the largest October to November increase in the 14 year history of the Index.

Year-on-year, online sales increased by 20% to mark the biggest year-on-year growth rate in 2014 so far. Excluding travel, growth was even more impressive at 22% year-on-year and 45% month-on-month.

The figures show that in the year to date online retail sales are up 15% and following a strong start to December with Cyber Monday, this figure is expected to reach 16% at the end of the year, in line with IMRG and Capgemini’s 2014 growth forecast.

Overall, an estimated £12.1 billion was spent online in November, with an average basket value, excluding travel, of £78.

IMRG and Capgemini attribute the record-breaking spike in online sales in November to this year’s Black Friday’s sales success, with sales up 44% in the week commencing 23 November alone, compared with the previous week. The month also saw the highest conversion rate of 2014 at 5.3%, suggesting that online shopping was more purposeful than usual.

Mobile commerce, including sales via smartphones and tablets, continued to grow in November, up 48% month-on-month and 80% compared to the same time last year. During the last week of the month, sales via smartphones and tablets surged 82% from the previous week, almost double the rate of overall e-retail sales growth.

The best performing sectors in November included Gifts, up 154% month-on-month, Health and Beauty, up 99%, and Electricals, up 71% month-on-month and 22% year-on-year. These figures also represent the strongest increase for these sectors between October and November in the history of the index.

Tina Spooner, chief information officer at IMRG said: “The unprecedented level of traffic to retail websites over Black Friday weekend resulted in a significant spike in online sales during the last week of November.  In fact, sales on Black Friday alone surged 135% year-on-year as consumers flocked to retail websites on what turned out to be the busiest online shopping day of the year, to date. 

“Many retailers reported that Black Friday was their biggest ever day for online sales, however some reported a slowdown in sales in the days leading up to Black Friday as consumers waited for discounts and promotions before starting their Christmas shopping.  Consequently, last month we saw the steepest ever October to November growth in the 14-year history of the Index, with sales up 37% month-on-month.  

“Although average spend per shopper was down about 9% from the previous month, overall estimated spend reached a staggering £12.1 billion in November and it looks like we are on target for another record-breaking Christmas with estimated spend set to break the £100 billion barrier by the end of this year.”  


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