The UK saw a steep jump in eCommerce sales in June 2020 — up 20 percent compared to June last year, the largest increase since the beginning of the Covid-19 lockdown restrictions, according to an analysis of hundreds of millions of transactions by global payments software company ACI Worldwide (NASDAQ:ACIW). In May UK online sales had increased six percent compared to the same period in 2019. Consumer purchases were driven by DIY and homeware goods, furniture, outdoor equipment and sporting goods.
The UK figures are in line with a worldwide trend - global eCommerce sales rose 28 percent in June 2020 compared to June 2019, again the largest year-on-year (YoY) increase in sales since lockdown restrictions began in March. In the US, consumer eCommerce purchases were up 25 percent in June, consistent with the May 2020 increase of 25 percent.
“Despite the easing of lockdown restrictions and the reopening of shops in the UK, eCommerce growth remains strong, suggesting a behavioural shift among consumers young and old is underway. Many Brits who have traditionally preferred shopping at brick and mortar stores are finding online shopping to be the new norm,” said Amanda Mickleburgh, director merchant retail, ACI Worldwide.
Non-fraud chargebacks continued to see a steep increase (27%) in April*—particularly in the airline industry as consumers looked to secure refunds for unused airline tickets. Sectors continuing to experience a dramatic decline in purchase volume include travel (down 29%) and ticketing (down 94%), whereas the volume of purchases remains strong for gaming (up 70%) and retail (up 68%).
“As the pandemic led to wide-ranging restrictions and work-from-home arrangements, many call centers and package processing facilities were unable to operate normally, leading to a backlog of returns and shipment delays, which drove up non-fraud chargebacks. Many merchants facing these challenges in fulfilment were able to offer consumers credit or alternative options such as points or gift cards to offset the inconvenience. And, the major card brands have made temporary changes to chargeback programs because of COVID-19,” Mickleburgh added.
eCommerce purchasing trends:
*As chargebacks take approximately 45 days to process, the most current complete data is from April 2020.