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Last minute online shopping surge

Christmas cheer for online retailers

Couple window shopping

Many shops will try to grab our attention with sales. But how do we know we’re getting a real bargain?

There was some last minute cheer for online retailers in the run up to Christmas with a surge in the number of people shopping online.

The number of people visiting web retailers  was slightly up on 2007, with a 1.2% year-on-year increase on last year – 2.6% more people visited online shops on 19 December, 1.4% more on 20 December and 3.9% more on 21 December, according to HitWise.

High street retailers with websites are feeling the benefit of online sales increases the most, experiencing a 2.7% increase in traffic on Saturday 20 December and a 5.9% increase on Sunday 21 December.

Robin Goad, director of research for Hitwise UK, said:‘The closer we get to Christmas, the bigger the advantage high street retailers have over their online only rivals. Whereas many online only players have now stopped taking orders for pre-Christmas delivery, high street retailers can continue using their website either to take ‘click and collect’ orders, or simply to advertise in store offers.’

iTunes also experienced a big increase in the number of visitors fuelled by the release of Hallelujah by X-Factor winner Alexandra Burke.

Four online retailers experienced a significant boost in visitor numbers:

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