Online retailers face prospect of bumper Christmas



Online purchasing in the UK has doubled in the last 12 months.

Since January, the number of Internet consumers has risen from 2.3 million (5.1% of...



Online purchasing in the UK has doubled in the last 12 months.

Since January, the number of Internet consumers has risen from 2.3 million (5.1% of the population) to 4.7 million (10.7% of the population) according to a report for Experian.

The report, which surveyed over 500,000 Internet users, reveals an increase in repeat purchases: consumers buying more than four times online rose from 24% to 31%.

Shopping online is most frequently used by the young and the wealthy: the 18-25 age bracket is more that twice the national average, while the 26-35 age group are at almost 166% of the national norm.

The over-55s - labelled silver surfers - are showing a significant number of online purchases, making up 20% of all online purchasers.

The most popular product is still books, but holidays and music are increasing in popularity. Financial (previously 4%) and health (3%) products have both fallen to 1% of online purchases.

"This may be due to the security issue of providing personal data on an application form on the Internet," said an Experian spokesman.

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