Nation of online shoppers
New research has indicated that the UK has turned to online shopping much faster than many other nations, driven by advances in technology.
The survey, carried out by professional services network KPMG, revealed that 77 per cent of British consumers choose to buy items such as DVDs, CDs, computer games and books via the internet, rather than the high street.
When measured globally, only 65 per cent of consumers have the same preference for online shopping.
Seventy-four per cent of both UK and US respondents said they prefer to buy holidays and flights online, but there was a discrepancy in grocery shopping, as 60 per cent of UK consumers would rather buy online compared with only 21 per cent in the US.
Thirty-one countries were included in the research, which documented the responses of 9,600 shoppers between the ages of 16 and 65. Most said they use social media and review websites to aid their decisions.
Less keen on mobile banking
Tudor Aw, European head of technology at KPMG, said: "From buying goods on their mobile phones to keeping up with friends on social networks, consumers are increasingly reliant on a range of technologies that perform important - yet often overlapping - tasks. This new 'converged lifestyle' will have huge implications for retailers."
However, the UK-based enthusiasm for smartphone shopping has not extended to mobile banking, with only 27 per cent of consumers saying they had used it within the last six months - just over half of the global percentage of 52 per cent.
This may indicate security worries among UK internet consumers, 53 per cent of whom prefer to store data on their own devices rather than online facilities such as the cloud, which is used by 65 per cent of shoppers worldwide.
Mark Baker, online marketing manager at theEword, said: "To many of us, it is no surprise that online shopping is very popular in the UK, as we are all becoming accustomed to using smartphones for everything.
"However, it is interesting that our country is keener on the activity than many other countries - and also that we are so cautious about our financial and personal data."