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Sales at department stores shrink in 2017 amid rising online shopping

2018/02/09 09:22

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SEOUL, Feb. 9 (Yonhap) -- South Korean department stores saw their sales fall last year, as the use of online platforms has fully caught on with local consumers due to its fast delivery and convenient payment options, government data showed Friday.

Combined sales at local department stores reached 29.24 trillion won (US$26.7 billion) last year, down 2.1 percent from 2016, according to the data from Statistics Korea.

The overall retail sales, meanwhile, increased 4.4 percent on-year to 402.91 trillion won, it showed. Revenues from department stores accounted for 7.3 percent of the total.

The proportion of sales generated from department stores compared to total retail sales has been declining after reaching 8.4 percent in 2013.

Experts say the fall of department store sales is largely due to the rise of online purchases as South Koreans increasingly make use of their smart devices.

Transactions made with computers, smartphones and tablets reached 78.22 trillion won in 2017, up a sharp 19.2 percent from a year earlier, according to separate data from the country's statistics agency.

In this photo, taken Feb. 4, 2018, shoppers browse gift sets at Lotte Department Store in Seoul with the Lunar New Year's holiday less than a week away. (Yonhap) In this photo, taken Feb. 4, 2018, shoppers browse gift sets at Lotte Department Store in Seoul with the Lunar New Year's holiday less than a week away. (Yonhap)

scaaet@yna.co.kr

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