Online Retail Sales on the Rise

By Cindy Waxer January 26, 2011

There’s some good news for retailers with an online presence. According to a report from The Center for Retail Research, online retail sales in Europe are poised to rise 18 percent to more than 200 billion euros ($271 billion) this year, outpacing growth at traditional shops as well as internet sales in the United States.

The study, which was commissioned by online shopping comparison website Kelkoo, reported that it expects 6.9 percent of all European retail spending to be online in 2011, up from 5.9 percent last year. What’s more, an 18 percent rise in internet sales to 202.9 billion euros compares with a forecast increase of 2.5 percent in total retail sales and projected growth of 10.9 percent to $192 billion in U.S. online sales.

In fact, last year, the firm reported that online retail sales climbed 19.4 percent to 171.9 billion euros in Europe and 11.4 percent to $173 billion in the United States.

"The European online market has been growing faster than its counterpart in the U.S. for the past three years and this trend is set to continue into 2011," the study said.

Similarly, research firm Forrester recently released its five-year forecast which predicted that e-commerce sales in the U.S. will keep growing at a 10 percent compound annual growth rate through 2014. Forrester also forecasts that online retail sales in the U.S. will be nearly $250 billion, up from $155 billion in 2009. Last year, online retail sales were up 11 percent, compared to 2.5 percent for all retail sales.

The Center for Retail Research’s findings are based on data and projections from 11 countries. The firm also reveals that Britain will remain Europe's largest online retail market this year with sales of 59.4 billion euros, followed by Germany on 45.1 billion and France on 38.7 billion. However, Poland is on its way to achieving the fastest growth rate of 33 percent, ahead of France on 24 percent and Sweden and Norway both on 22 percent.

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Edited by Janice McDuffee

TechZone360 Contributing Editor

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