For four consecutive years high street sales continue to decline as shoppers prefer to make their purchases online.
According to High Street Sales Tracker BDO, last year sales were 0.1% less than the previous year. Figures suggest that consumers are spending less on fashion and more on products for the home.
For online retailers figures are continuing to increase and were 19% higher than the previous year.
Sales were high on Christmas day as High Street stores experienced an 11.7% increase than the following year.
According to BDO, retailers were at an advantage because Christmas fell on Sunday.
Orders online increased by a whopping 51.1 % on the run up to Christmas.
Retail shopping makes up 15% of all online sales.
The first three weeks of December saw less shoppers visiting retail parks, High Streets and shopping centers.
However, shoppers made a comeback on Christmas week as they scrambled for items such as Christmas cards, wrapping paper and bicycles.
The November Black Friday may also be responsible for the fall in numbers during December, with BDO reporting that October and November experienced high sales.
BDO’s sales tracker is responsible for taking figures from approximately 10,000 stores and comparing them to the previous year.
They describe the decline in sales as a “Disappointment” considering the fact they are lower than figures in 2014 and 2015.
Head of Retail and Wholesale for BDO states that anything less than the sales in December 2015 could mean financial ruin for some stores.
“There are going to be major challenges in 2017, due to the fact that the pound is now weaker and there is an increase in inflation. This could lead to figures for the end of 2017 being even lower than 2016.”