A new report from Retail Economics and Womble Bond Dickinson has found that online shopping in the UK could increase from 19% of all retail sales to 53% by 2028, which is less than a decade away. With high street businesses already flagging due to the pressure felt by e-commerce, this report spells very bad news. The growth in online sales, according to the report, will be driven by the changing demographics of the adult population, the development of in-home deliveries, and the declining number of physical stores.
The main factor behind the shift will be demographics, both Millennials, and Gen Z adults have grown up with digital playing a big part of their lives and are more comfortable shopping online than those older than them. People in these groups are now or are just about to become adults with money to spend. The report found that 66% of the Gen Z population shops online at least once every two weeks compared to just 29% of over 65s.
Commenting on the trend, Retail Economics chief executive, Richard Lim said:
“Successful retailers have always had to reinvent themselves to stay relevant. However, the pace of change will inevitably prove too fast for many – as shown by the number of CVAs hitting the headlines. While the impact of future technologies and consumer acceptance is highly uncertain, it definitely feels like the digital retail-revolution is only just getting started.”
While the report shows how likely it is that more people will shop online more often, it also points out risks such as data breaches and the impact this can have on customers’ trust. Retail Economics found that shoppers were more aware that they needed to protect their personal data and that a quarter of shoppers have limited the amount of data they share with retailers.
Source: Retail Week