Online UK Businesses’ Sales Are Growing at a Faster Rate

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Shadrach   in Alternatives

Last updated: 08 January 2020, 05:30 GMT


Official data suggest that the UK businesses’ online sales grew the previous year at their fastest rate since records began.

The non-financial sector businesses’ e-commerce sales reached £688 billion in 2018 from £582 billion in 2017. That’s an increase of 18% or 17% among businesses with 10 or more employees - the highest since the index started in 2014.

Despite this, only 12.9% of businesses made sales through the website. The largest group to make sales were the wholesalers followed by manufacturers. Altogether, an estimated £365 billion was spent through the business websites in 2018, that is an increase of £66 billion or 22% from the previous year. 

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Businesses with 1,000 or more employees made an average 28% of their turnover online. Some 47% of this size of business sell online. Among businesses with 10 or more staff, 20.5% of business transactions took place online. Smaller – or micro – businesses made only 6.7% of their sales online – with only 12% of this size of business selling online. Almost all (96%) of businesses with 10 or more staff had internet access, compared to 88% of micro-enterprises. The most common internet speed rose to 30 to 100Mbps, up from 2 to 10 Mbps in 2014 - and, said the ONS report, the larger the business, the more likely it was to have a fast internet connection. In 2018, for the first time, more than half (54%) of businesses with 10 or more members of staff had a broadband speed of more than 30Mbps. 

In addition, 18.5% of businesses with about 1,000 or more employees had an ICT security incident. 

19% of large businesses have come against security issues and social networks on the other hand have become popular among businesses.