Essential reading for retailers and suppliers in the home improvement market

DIY and gardening searches soar in the sunshine

Published: 22 July 2013
New figures on retail search volumes for the second quarter of 2013 reveal that DIY and gardening were the star performers.
DIY and gardening searches soar in the sunshine
According to the British Retail Consortium, growth was up 32% year-on-year within the combined category, which also had the highest growth in search volumes on tablets and smartphones, up by 170% and 81% year-on-year, respectively.

Total retail search volumes grew 15% over the same quarter a year earlier, and search volumes on tablets outpaced those on any other device, increasing 132% compared with growth on smartphones of 66%.

"This quarter's search data backs up the trends we have been seeing in the BRC's Retail Sales Monitor, with increases in interest in clothing brands and garden products," said BRC director general Helen Dickinson. "As the weather has improved, these have been popular categories, and with the continuing increase in the use of mobile devices to perform these searches, we may well be seeing customers researching new wardrobe and garden purchases while outdoors enjoying the sunshine."

She added that the results also show the changes the internet is bringing to the international retail market.

"The considerable increase this month in the number of UK consumers searching overseas retailers show that barriers are increasingly being broken down."

At Google, retail director Peter Fitzgerald said: "The second quarter saw strong sustained growth in retail queries. Traditionally, this is a strong quarter for DIY and gardening retailers, a trend we saw repeated this year, fuelled by some fair weather and three bank holidays.

"The growing multi-screening phenomenon across the UK - where people use their connected devices whilst watching TV - is also reflected in the growth in queries coming from tablets and smartphones."

Retail search volumes on tablet devices were highest in April, up 143%, while growth of retail search volumes on smartphone devices was strongest in May, up 69% compared with 64% in June.

The BRC also found that the growth rate of tablet searches outpaced those for smartphone retail searches in every retail sector.

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