No one should be surprised to learn that Amazon has retained the top spot in the fifth annual list of the UK's 100 'Hot Shops' published by IMRG and Experian Hitwise. However, there are three notable new entries, with the London 2012 Ticket site appearing in 35th place, followed by H&M (52) and Etsy (53). The table is all relative -- it's based on ranking website traffic -- but it noticeably reflects the power of high-street retailers, including supermarkets, department stores, and women's fashion outlets. "Online only" shops such as Amazon, Play.com and Etsy are now in the minority.
UK users appear to be more keen on do-it-yourself stuff and less interested in travel, and Hitwise noted that: "B&Q and Homebase saw strong season gains this quarter thanks to the pleasant April weather and early demand for BBQs, lawnmowers and garden furniture." IKEA (up from 49th to 36th) and Wickes (up from 55th to 49th) also did well, though SrewFix.co.uk (down from 27th to 47th) did not.
Many airlines and travel companies lost places, including EasyJet (down 2 to 12th), Ryan Air (down 7 to 19th), British Airways (down 7 to 39th), Virgin Atlantic (down 14 to 87th) and BMI Baby (down 24 to 96th). Expedia and Lastiminute.com also slipped back relative to other online stores, though Travel Republic (up 6 to 46th) was among those bucking the trend.
Computer companies also tended to slip down the table. Apple dropped from fourth place to eighth, while HP plunged from 24th to 48th, and Dell EMEA from 36th to 81st.
The fastest climbers year-on-year in the HOT 100 were National Express (up 23 places), Republic (+22), Bhs (+22), House of Fraser (+20), Boots (+18) and Sainsbury's (+17). These fast risers represent the champions of some of the fastest growing industries within online retail this year: department stores, fashion, food and health and beauty.
The early days of online retailing were marked by the success of travel sites, sales of things that could easily be posted (books, CDs, games), and boys' toys (computers, gadgets and gizmos). Today, it shows the much stronger presence of female and family shopping.
Hitwise's list of the most popular online stores -- Tesco, M&S, Next, John Lewis, Top Shop, Sainsbury's, ASDA, Boots, Dorothy Perkins, Mothercare, BHS, Waitrose, Clarks etc -- now looks more and more like the traditional high street.
You can download the full table from Hitwise.
The Top 20 sites in the Hitwise Hot 100 shops