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UK companies fail to sell their products online

September 8, 2005

A new study reveals that in the U.K., many local businesses are missing important opportunities on a pie of £ 1.5 billion by simply neglecting to offer their products and services on the Internet.

A sample of shoppers interviewed by online search directory Touch Local shows that close to 70 percent would like to acquire products from their local stores but convenience is still their main concern.

Overwhelmingly, shoppers prefer to buy online, and with an estimated £1.5bn to be generated by online sales this year, too many firms are failing to claim their share, Touch Local claims.

Its poll uncovered strong sentiment toward buying local. Nearly half of shoppers favour their local shops over superstores, but research shows only 31 per cent of local shops are trading online.

Of these, only six per cent have websites with payment facilities.

With 69 per cent of UK local businesses still not trading online, customers have no choice but to buy from chain stores, Touch Local says.

“The people of Britain clearly want to shop locally - and we are all for helping boost local economy and supporting local traders - but we are pushed for time,” said Tony Piedade, commercial director for Touch Local.

He said most firms shun online retail because of fears about the cost of building and maintaining a website, a lack of marketing funds and the red tape involved in acquiring an internet merchant account number to trade via the Internet.

Source: The Register



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