23 May 2024, 22:16
By Furniture News May 11, 2023

April marks two years of negative growth for online retail

April gave an insight into how online retail is performing two years since the high street reopened after the pandemic skews, reports IMRG, whose Online Retail Index found that UK online retail sales reported a -3.5% YoY decline last month, compared to a drop of -11.8% in April 2022.

The online market has now experienced two full years of declining growth following the pandemic online boom.

April's MoM growth was a bit lower than last year, and grew at +1.6% relative to March. While this might seem surprising, as April saw the worst dip in YoY traffic (-10.5%) since early 2022, buyer intent is still there, particularly approaching major events including King Charles III's Coronation and the subsequent bank holiday, says IMRG. Order volumes grew for the first time in nine months in April (+0.3%) – although this is small growth after a sharp decline in April 2022 (-21.6%), the trend line has steadily shifted toward positive growth since June 2022.

Home and garden retailers typically benefit the most from Easter trading, yet YoY growth for this category was down -1.5% in April.

Andy Mulcahy, strategy and insight director, IMRG, says: “All in all, April was not great and not terrible. The difficulty in understanding demand at this time of year is related to some big events that move in the calendar, such as Easter. There is also the coronation this year, which seems to have stimulated a surge in demand in the final week of April, where the amount of money spent online rose +11.5% versus the previous week, whereas it was only up +4.4% for the same week last year. As long as we don’t see a big dip in spend for the week following, that could give online a positive boost moving toward the summer period.” 

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