The latest figures from the IMRG Capgemini e-Retail Sales Index have revealed that the UK online retail sector has experienced its strongest Q1 growth in three years, representing an estimated £23.1bn spent online.

The summer weather appears to have enhanced demand for garden products (+40% YTD), alcohol (+31% month on month) and clothing (+21% month on month), while the conversion rate also increased significantly – to a five-year high of 4.2%.

The continued growth is not only due to more customers adopting online channels, but the fact that basket values are increasing. This round of figures highlighted an increase to £86 average basket value – up from £77 in the previous month.

On the whole, the index reflected the improving British economy, and with wages looking to increase in real terms it seems that the growth will only increase.

“This month’s index is a good indicator of the current strength of the UK economy,” said Chris Webster, head of retail consulting and technology at Capgemini.

It is interesting to see that spending over the last three months was not limited to just one sector or the result of one particular influence.”

Rather, Britons are in good spirits, have regained confidence in the economy and using online as a means to spend across the board.”

The report gained coverage across a range of publications, including Yahoo! News, Business Money and the Retail Bulletin.