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Clothing and footwear hit record online sales in April

Online sales in clothing and footwear hit record highs in April as the warmer weather encouraged shoppers to ready their wardrobes for the summer ahead.

According to the Online BRC-KPMG Retail Sales Monitor, ecommerce sales of non-food products grew by 15.4% in April year-on-year, the best growth seen since October 2014. Footwear achieved its best performance since December 2012, while clothing saw its biggest spike since the monitor began recording in 2012.

Clothing was the largest contributor to online sales growth in April with 25.9% of UK clothing sales made online, up four percentage points on last year. Sales were boosted by promotions and seasonably themed online fashion editorials.

Footwear was the second fastest growing category in April with growth driven by women’s footwear. Full price items were in demand allowing retailers to hold off on promotional activity. The penetration rate improved by 4.3 percentage points from last year.

Helen Dickinson, director general of the British Retail Consortium, said: “Considering that almost one pound in every five is spent online for non-food goods, the growth figure is testament to the great British online retail offering. Fashion and beauty performed particularly strongly, with three of those categories – clothing, footwear and health and beauty – achieving their best online growth for over two years, while stores also displayed healthy sales increases for those products. Retailers will welcome this result achieved without significantly higher promotional activities”.

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