Online sales drive South Korea’s 4% retail growth in January

The country’s offline sales dipped by 0.5%.

South Korea’s retail sales in January increased 4% year-on-year (YoY) in January, supported by the 9.1% growth in online sales, according to the Ministry of Trade, Industry, and Energy.

In a statement, sales at online stores were boosted by the demand for services/other, which rose 27.3%, due to overseas travel packages, Seollal holiday gift e-coupons, and other performance ticket sales.

Most categories also increased such as home appliances/culture (6.5%), food products (10.7%) and cosmetics (up 12.2%).

READ MORE: South Korean restaurants feel the pinch of surging delivery costs

Meanwhile, offline sales declined by 0.5% due to the lower number of store visits because of store closures during the Seollal Holidays and increased orders of sanitation and daily necessities online.

Convenient stores saw an 8.4% growth in sales due to the higher number of visitors during the Seollal holidays, whilst sales in hypermarket chains and department stores contracted by 3.8% and 3.7%, respectively. Super supermarket sales also dipped by 4.5%.

The monthly sales figure is based on a survey of 26 major retailers, composed of three department store chains, three hypermarket chains, three convenience store chains, four SMM operators, and the other half were online retailers.

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