General Election drags online retail sales growth to second lowest level since 2001

Helen Cahill
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IFA 2012 Consumer Electronics Trade Fair
Smartphones are becoming increasingly important sales channel (Source: Getty)

Shoppers were put off online spending in June as the General Election dragged on consumer sentiment.

Internet sales grew by just 9.5 per cent year-on-year in June, the second-lowest growth since 2001, according to the IMRG Capgemini online sales index.

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The General Election was the biggest drag on sales over the month. On the week of the vote, which took place on 8 June, online sales were up by just 3.4 per cent year-on-year.

However, by the third week of the month, online spending picked up again, with sales growth jumping to 12.9 per cent.

IMRG said the warm weather may have encouraged consumers to hit the high street. Online-only retailers saw a sales uplift of 12 per cent, which was down from the 31 per cent boost in sales they received in June last year.

Justin Opie, managing director at IMRG, said: "Online retailers are facing something of a perfect storm at the moment, having to operate against the backdrop of a continuing wave of political uncertainty, rising inflation, a changing retail calendar (due to the impact of major sales days such as Prime Day) and heatwaves."

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