Christmas comes early

shutterstock_21041236.jpgDeck the halls, crack open the sherry and bung a turkey in the oven, Christmas has come early – or at least, that’s what the nation’s online retailers think.The internet is abuzz because, according to figures from internet trade body IMRG, today is the peak of the online shopping year. With workers putting in long hours forced to do their Christmas shopping online this year, sales by web-based retailers are expected to reach £320m – with those made in the hour between 1pm and 2pm predicted to hit £28m.It’s a testament to how well online shopping sites are doing in comparison to the high street. While high street retailers have been adopting pre-Christmas persuasion tactics such as nationwide one-day sales and enormous price cuts, online retailers are expected to see their sales rocket by as much as a quarter year-on-year.Martin Peterlechner of Ivobank told the BBC the figures highlight the extent to which online shopping has ‘become ingrained in our daily lives’.Consumers are increasingly shying away from the temptations and distractions of the high street, preferring instead to stay home and shop from the comfort of their living rooms – for those retailers who haven’t quite made it online, perhaps this news will serve as a rallying cry.

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