Online retail sales maintains double-digit growth - but sales from smartphones slow

Helen Cahill
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IFA 2015 Consumer Electronics And Appliances Trade Fair
The rapid growth in sales through smartphones couldn't maintain the same pace it had last year (Source: Getty)

Online retail sales maintained double-digit growth in February, but there are signs that sales on smartphones are faltering.

Internet sales grew 15 per cent year-on-year in February, maintaining around the same level of growth recorded last year. The average value of the cyber-basket hit a seven-year high of £20.

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However, for the past three months, sales growth on smartphones was 57 per cent, and although this is a pretty impressive figure, it was down from a growth of 96 per cent over the same period last year, according to the figures from IMRG Capgemini.

Sales of electrical items recovered from two months of decline and were up by 1.5 per cent year-on-year in February.

Read more: Sainsbury's warns of "competitive" conditions as retail sales decline

Justin Opie, managing director at IMRG, said the slowdown in smartphone sales growth "does appear to be fairly dramatic".

"That said, rates of smartphone growth over the past two years have been fairly high, and that couldn't continue indefinitely," he said.

"The slowdown is specific to the online-only retailers, multichannel retailers are performing better than they have been through mobile, with greatly increased average basket values. So it remains positive, but perhaps with a cloud or two on the horizon."

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