The ecommerce sector in the UK is continuing to grow year after year. This is mainly coming from an increase in both the frequency that consumers are shopping online and the amount that they are spending.

After record sales of £38.8bn in 2013, retailers are set to ring up online sales of £45bn this year – an increase of 16% on last year, making the UK the largest ecommerce market in Europe.

Consumers are expected to shop on average online 18 times this year and spend £59 each time, according to an international study by the Centre for Retail Research commissioned by digital coupon marketplace RetailMeNot.

Comparatively, European shoppers are set to make on average 15.2 online purchases this year with a basket size of £49, while US shoppers are forecast to shop online 15.6 times, with an average spend of £71.

Giulio Montemagno, senior vice-president of international at RetailMeNot, says: “The recent study results show that today growth comes primarily from an increase in the frequency of consumers shopping online and spending more money through online channels while in previous years growth was mainly driven by first time online shoppers.”

He adds that the study shows that online sales in the UK could grow by 15.8% this year, while sales on the high street are forecast to grow by a more modest 2.4%.

Montemagno says: “With such a competitive environment retailers must look to mobile devices and the web to incentivise consumers to shop online and in-store.”