The month of August is disappearing before our very eyes, so let’s waste no time dilly-dallying – on with more stats!

This week’s roundup includes news about brand loyalty, back-to-school buys, analytics practices and loads more.

As always, you’ll find further insight in the Internet Statistics Compendium.

Half of UK retailers are struggling to connect in-store and online

According to research from RetailMeNot, 59% of retailers cite a lack of visibility across channels as the biggest challenge they face today.

Despite 92% of large retailers selling online, nearly two-fifths are still failing to provide consistent pricing across the board.

With the recognition that a more consistent experience is needed, 42% of businesses are said to be restructuring in order to integrate in-store and online teams. 

27% of consumers display no brand loyalty

A new infographic from the DMA has highlighted the four different types of loyalty that consumers feel towards brands.

While 40% of consumers are ‘active loyals’, i.e. people who stay loyal to brands for both special and routine purchases, 27% are ‘active disloyals’ – displaying no brand loyalty at all.

In general, disloyalty is said to increase with the value of items, meaning that consumers are more likely to shop around for expensive products like technology and furniture.

Twitter suspends 235,000 accounts in six months

Twitter has announced that it has suspended 235,000 accounts in the past six months due to violation of its policies relating to terrorism and the threat of violence.

With 313m monthly active users, Twitter is struggling to control the amount of terrorism-linked accounts on its platform. 

Daily suspensions on the platform are up 80% on the previous year, bringing the overall number of suspensions since the middle of 2015 to 360,000 in total.

A third of people use only their mobile to make purchasing decisions

Research by xAd has highlighted how crucial mobile is in the path to purchase. 

In a survey of 1,500 consumers, 39% cited a smartphone as the most important tool used to research a product.

What’s more, 29% admitted that it was the only tool they used to make a purchasing decision.

With 56% of consumers buying immediately or within the hour after researching, the ‘always on’ nature of mobile means that marketers need to place more focus on engaging consumers in the right time and place. 

Failure to achieve targets is top reason for SEO agency terminations

According to a study by Artios, the biggest cause of businesses dropping SEO agencies is a failure to hit long-term targets, with this accounting for 29% of all terminations.

25% of terminations are said to be due to a lack of transparency around methods, closely followed by out-dated SEO techniques causing 15% of dismissals. 

The study also found the longer the relationship, the more mutual the ending – after three or more years, ‘friendly terminations’ are the most common parting of ways.

Visits to online retail sites up 2.6% this back-to-school season

Data from Hitwise, a division of Connexity, has found that the 2016 back to school season has been the biggest ever for the top online retail sites.

Compared to the same time last year, visits were up 2.6% in the run up to August 13th, equating to around 100m more online shopping visits so far.

Hitwise also revealed the hottest products for kids, with the most sought after including Pokémon backpacks, the iPad Pro and Yeezy trainers.

Heavy discounting leads to highest online sales growth in 20 months

Figures from the IMRG Capgemini eRetail Sales Index show that online sales grew +19% year-on-year in July, making it the highest yearly growth since November 2014.

Heavy discounting from retailers across the board is said to have contributed to the surge, with the average basket value of goods purchased online falling from £80.52 to £78.39 in a single month.

Out of the best-performing categories, clothing and home and garden came out on top, with a period of sunny weather encouraging us to spend online. 

35% of organisations believe technology is key to understanding customers 

Our latest report, Secrets of Elite Analytics Practices, delves into the relationship between customer analytics and business results. 

The research found that organisations of all maturity levels agree technology is a massive contributing factor for success. 

When asked what they believe has had the greatest impact on better understanding customers, companies with both elite and average analytics capabilities cited having the right technologies for data collection and analysis.

High-performance ads deliver an average of 180% ROI

Analysis by Warc has shown that the average profit from high-performing advertising is 1.8 times the initial investment. 

This data comes from the Warc database which includes figures calculated within the first year of a campaign.

As a result, it does not take into account the long-term return, with the total predicted to be much higher as time goes on.

In fact, the long-term payback is said to be twice as high as the short-term.

China predicted to become the world’s biggest retail market

It is already the largest in terms of ecommerce, but according to eMarketer, China is set to surpass the US to become the single biggest retail market in the world. 

Research suggests that total sales will increase 13% to reach $4.886 trillion in 2016. In comparison the US is set to grow at just 2.6% to reach $4.823 trillion.

Over the next four years, this gap will widen even further, as China’s retail sales value is forecast to stand at $7.086 trillion by 2020.