The self-appointed nation of shop keepers that is the United Kingdom is embracing technology so efficiently that is adopting its new status as a nation of ONLINE shop keepers. The UK may be behind in many things, however, it is leading the world when it comes to online shopping.
With the high street under attack from out of town shopping and online retail shops this should not come as a major surprise. The cloud that has hung over High Street retailers for many years in the form of greedy landlords, shallow thinking councils and punitive parking regulations may after all have a sliver lining.
Recently reported by the BBC (article here) a new study suggests,
- The internet contributes to 8.3% of the UK economy, a bigger share than for any of the other G20 major countries,
- The “internet economy” was worth £121bn in 2010, more than £2,000 per person, researchers at the Boston Consulting Group (BCG) said.
- That made it bigger than the healthcare, construction or education sectors.
- The UK also carries out far more retail online than any other major economy.
- Some 13.5% of all purchases were done over the internet in 2010, and this is projected to rise to 23% by 2016.
However, this boom is dominated by a handful of big players rather than lots of small to medium sized businesses.
It is unfortunate that while a small minority (albeit large players) are taking advantage of this windfall, the majority of UK businesses are not. It is even more unfortunate that most businesses have very little idea how to tap into this huge market opportunity effectively.
Some businesses that have dabbled in online retail have found that they have got it so horribly wrong by spending too much time, effort and money with web-developers, concentrating on the design and navigation of their website rather than a focused, targeted marketing strategy. Consequently they have see a very poor return on investment. Other companies, like Amazon, for instance, that are doing well have invested significantly in specialist consultants strategically planning for Digital Marketing.
Imagine assigning a builder to build a property without hiring an architect.