‘One in five shops to close as ecommerce grows’

One in five high street shops are expected to close in the next five years, according to a new report as separate survey finds a third of consumers now do most of their shopping online.

Shoppers on Oxford Street in December.
London’s Oxford Street VIP shopping day in December attracted shoppers but high streets face closures.

More than 60,000 high streets shops are predicted to close and 164 retail chains to go into administration, according to the Retail Futures 2018 report by the Centre for Retail Research. The closures are predicted despite the Government-backed Portas Pilot scheme designed to revive local high streets.

Consumer spending has increased just 12 per cent since 2006 and the high street’s share of spending remains in decline. It is expected to fall to 40.2 per cent by 2014, down from 50 per cent in 2000, according to the report.

Online retail is expected to account for 21.5 per cent of total retail spending in the next five years, up from 12.7 per cent currently, making it the highest share of spend of any territory in the world.

The report claims retailers now need just 70 stores nationwide alongside an online operation to achieve a strong national presence, compared with 250 stores needed a decade ago, signalling the shift away from physical outlets.

Professor Joshua Bamfield, director of Centre for Retail Research, says:  “Retailers have to make clear and strategic responses to the changing pattern of how consumers shop, which includes tactical decisions about store numbers and locations. They also need to fully integrate these physical stores with their websites, smart phone offering and social media community coherently. I think retail stores will remain an important, although smaller, part of the shopping process as online retail continues to grow.”

Meanwhile, a separate survey of 2,000 consumers by comparison site broadbandchoces.co.uk, found more than a third of shoppers do most of their shopping online and average online spend has doubled to £113 a month in the last 10 years.

A quarter of respondents expect to increase the amount they spend online over the next year.

Latest from Marketing Week


Access Marketing Week’s wealth of insight, analysis and opinion that will help you do your job better.

Register and receive the best content from the only UK title 100% dedicated to serving marketers' needs.

We’ll ask you just a few questions about what you do and where you work. The more we know about our visitors, the better and more relevant content we can provide for them. And, yes, knowing our audience better helps us find commercial partners too. Don't worry, we won't share your information with other parties, unless you give us permission to do so.

Register now


Our award winning editorial team (PPA Digital Brand of the Year) ask the big questions about the biggest issues on everything from strategy through to execution to help you navigate the fast moving modern marketing landscape.


From the opportunities and challenges of emerging technology to the need for greater effectiveness, from the challenge of measurement to building a marketing team fit for the future, we are your guide.


Information, inspiration and advice from the marketing world and beyond that will help you develop as a marketer and as a leader.

Having problems?

Contact us on +44 (0)20 7292 3703 or email customerservices@marketingweek.com

If you are looking for our Jobs site, please click here