It seems obvious that our shopping habits change with the times. Back in the Middle Ages, a vast majority of the population just lived off the land, growing a wide variety of fruits and vegetables according to the seasons. In fact, the feudal system was basically indentured servitude, with the peasants working the fields and the nobles getting all the money. Around the 14th century, the overall economic system opened up, and farmers were able to start selling some of their produce at local markets. While they initially resorted to bartering, the introduction of currency allowed people to sell their goods and buy something they needed, such as a wheelbarrow. Flash-forward to the 20th century, and the modern supermarket, as well as the department store, became a fixture in most modern cities in the UK. High Street was doing just fine, thank you, until the Internet came along and once again caused a major disruption. Today, online commerce is beginning to assert itself as a major force.
The Convenience of Shopping Online
As more and more people access the Internet, especially with the latest smartphones and tablets, online retail sales continue to rise dramatically. Many people find the convenience of being able shop on the go, or even just from the comfort of their home at night, very appealing. Many online merchants, who are able to keep their overhead costs quite low, are able to offer very competitive prices, which consumers at this stage of our economy seem to value highly. Additionally, the ability to deliver orders quickly and efficiently increases customer confidence and satisfaction. While they cannot experience the instant gratification that they get from shopping at a High Street store, they seem to be willing to delay their gratification in order to have the convenience of shopping online and enjoying some savings.
The Results Speak for Themselves
So how much is online retail really worth in the UK? Last year, it accounted for over £50 billion, an increase of over 14% from the year before. Many experts expect the trend to continue, with similar increases expected year after year for the foreseeable future. This expenditure for online sales represents only 12% of overall retail sales, but it is worth noting that it is the highest in Europe. Only Germany comes even close, where online sales represent 9% of overall retail expenditures. With more and more people able to access the Internet, just about any time they want, coupled with merchants offering secure payment systems and speedy delivery, we can expect online retailing to continue to be a major force in the UK economy.
A Great Way to Get Noticed
If you are an online retailer, you obviously want to be able to attract the broadest range of consumers possible. One excellent way to do that is to have a professional firm manage your pay per click, (otherwise known as PPC) campaign. By knowing exactly how to spend your online advertising budget, you can maximise your investment and your revenue. All you have to do is visit the website of such a firm in order to be able to meet some of the best in the business, people who can help make your online experience a huge success.