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Top fashion chains losing revenue due to poor e-commerce

By Danielle Wightman-Stone

29 Nov 2016

UK fashion retailers Topshop, Dorothy Perkins and Evans were joint bottom in a ranking of the UK’s top 50 retailers on their eCommerce offering, according to a new report by retail analyst firm Summit.

The report analysing e-commerce performance reveals that UK retailers are missing out on 2 billion pounds in online revenue each year due to slow websites and not having guest checkouts, with Arcadia’s fashion brands scoring poorly in the ranking.

Dorothy Perkins, Topshop, and Evans, along with Superdry came joint bottom with a score of 56 percent. With Arcadia’s flagship brand Topshop only scoring 13 percent for online customer service, as a result of slow response times and limited contact options for customers.

Retailers were assessed and scored on over 170 elements across four main e-commerce pillars: logistics and customer service, eCommerce technology, online marketing and digital trading. Scores were then averaged out across all areas, giving each retailer an overall score.

Argos topped the chart with a score of 77 percent, closely followed by Sainsbury’s with 75 percent, while John Lewis, Screwfix and Tesco all scored 72 percent.

The report notes that 38 percent of the top 50 retailers don’t have a guest checkout option, which Summit suggests is costing them 1 billion pounds per year, as more than a quarter of shoppers abandon their baskets without this option.

It also revealed that on average, page load speed across the top 50 retailers was seven seconds. This is double the recommended minimum, with every extra second in site load time costing retailers 7 percent in converted sales, meaning that UK retailers are missing out on 1 billion pounds in revenue per year as a result.

Hedley Aylott, chief executive and co-founder of Summit said: “While retailers have made huge strides, with most now getting mobile right, many are still struggling to offer delivery options that meet shoppers’ needs. While this will not be an easy fix, no-one in retail needs further convincing or evidence of the importance of the online experience on overall profitability.

“These results are confirmation that there is still a lot of room for improvement, highlighting the real opportunity for retailers to fix some of the basics.”