High street landlords and councils risk losing multichannel retailers
– Over a quarter of sales for High St / Multichannel retailers will be online by end of 2014
– 5% of store sales shifted online since March
– 85% of retailers expect online growth to be in excess of 10% in Q4
New research from IMRG reveals that online is taking an increasingly large share of sales for multichannel retailers (those with a physical store presence). In its latest e-retail survey of senior e-commerce professionals, IMRG found the internet is expected to account for 27% of sales for multichannel retailers during the fourth quarter of 2014.
Overall, the results show that 5% of these stores’ retail sales have shifted from stores to online since March this year.
In terms of growth expectations for Q4, retailers overall are more confident than last year, with 85% of survey respondents forecasting e-commerce growth in excess of 10%. In last year’s survey 80% of respondents expected the same level of growth during the last quarter of 2013. However, the latest results reveal a higher percentage of Online-Only / Catalogue retailers (92%) expect annual growth to be in excess of 10%, while just over three-quarters (77%) of multichannel retailers forecast the same rate of growth.
E-retail has been growing very strongly for more than 10 years, and mobile commerce has added even more impetus to this trend. The role of the physical retail outlet is coming under increasing scrutiny and it’s important that all instrumental parties recognise this.
James Roper, chairman and founder of IMRG said: “This IMRG research highlights how councils and landlords are killing so many of the UK’s high streets by ignoring the fundamental transformation taking place in shopping. Retailers who are already taking more than a quarter of their sales from outside of their physical stores can no longer bear the same costs and lengths of commitment to rents and business rates negotiated when all of their sales were store based. 10,000 retail outlets have been empty for over three years, and tens of thousands more are at risk as their costs rise and productivity falls. IMRG is actively addressing this vital issue by using its seat on the Government’s Digital High Street Advisory Board to propose new principles for measuring high street performance and the creation of a new multichannel value model to inform all stakeholders.”