Internet retail sales in the UK have overtaken those in Germany, as the UK is crowned ‘king of the clicks’. Latest research from MINTEL shows that although Germany is the largest economy in Europe, Internet retail sales in the UK (9.79bn Euros) stood some 80 million Euros ahead of Germany (9.71bn Euros) last year, making the UK Europe’s biggest on-line retail market. France, in third position, followed a considerable way behind with 2005 sales of just 6.50bn Euros.In 2005 on-line retail sales in the UK, Germany and France collectively made up almost two-thirds (65%) of the 40.2bn Euro European e-commerce market. Overall, this market has grown at a phenomenal rate – up an impressive 51% on the 26.6bn Euros of 2004 – and yet the sector still only amounted to 2% of total European retail sales. However, MINTEL estimates show that this market is expected to grow by a further 186% between 2005 and 2010. With sales forecast to reach some 115bn Euros, e-commerce is set to increase its share of total European retail sales from 2% to nearer 5% over this five year period.

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