Huge online growth in November as shoppers wait for Black Friday


November recorded the highest ever monthly online sales growth which, according to the latest IMRG Capgemini e-Retail Sales Index, was driven by purchases made on smartphones.

November’s month-on-month growth of 40% is the highest recorded by the IMRG Capgemini e-Retail Sales Index since it launched 15 years ago.


Sales made via smartphones have grown 97% year-on-year and now account for a record 32% of all ‘mobile commerce’ sales. Sales made via tablet computers grew year-on-year by just 12% during the same period, a record low for the devices.

Alex Smith-Bingham, head of digital, consumer products and retail at Capgemini, said: “It’s becoming clearer that Black Friday is the on-line retailer’s day, taking sales away from the High Street and out-competing their multichannel counterparts. The significant shift to smartphones shows that those with a mobile-first strategy across the customer journey are at a distinct advantage. The results in December will tell whether the success for on-line retailers is limited to the day or the two week period.”

November’s growth figure was also aided by the contrast between rampant expenditure on Black Friday and consumer restraint in the previous month, with the Index recording its lowest ever annual growth in October.

The Index also shows that online-only retailers are benefiting from this shift in shopping habits, recording 24% year-on-year sales growth, compared to just four percent for multichannel retailers.

Tina Spooner, chief information officer at IMRG, added: “It is evident that the shift toward mobile devices continues, with smartphones accounting for an increasing share of mobile commerce sales. In fact, smartphones have taken an additional 10% share over the past 12 months alone, accounting for almost a third of m-retail sales in November, up from 22% in the same month last year.”

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