Well, Christmas is just around the corner and of course its no surprise that we now do a huge amount of our Christmas shopping online. Black Friday is coming thick and fast, closely followed by Cyber Monday.

Social media marketing is becoming more and more prominent world wide and alot of these statistics within the blog cement this.

UK Internet users made 2.8 billion visits to retail websites and spent 372 million hours shopping in December 2012, with Boxing Day sales reaching 113 million visits, setting a new British retail record.

But its no longer just at Christmas that we have seen the huge impact of the internet on the UK economy. The increase in ways to access the web on the move has meant that people can now shop, search for jobs, and compare energy and insurance suppliers all from the comfort of their train or bus seat. This shows that online marketing is becoming a key compenent to retail business.Theres no doubt that the government is starting to look to the digital economy to provide some of the growth that the UK so badly needs.

According to one measure the digital economy consists of approximately 15% of active UK companies, and around two million jobs have been created out of the rise in the digital entrepreneurism. That doesnt include the millions of other jobs which have been created by companies with more traditional set-up but who also have an online presence. For example, Tesco and John Lewis are obviously large high street operators, but also dominate large sections of the internet with their online shops, delivery system and the employment of thousands of people.

A recent report suggested that existing government initiatives designed to accelerate the growth of the digital economy, were expected to generate economic output worth £7 billion per year by 2017. It also claimed a further £4 billion per year could be found if government and business worked more closely to improve digital education in schools.

The internet economy in the UK is growing at 10% a year and will account for 10% of GDP by 2016. We spend more per head on and over the internet than any other nation, and UK businesses are leaders in digital technology and its uses. Thats 10% of £2.4 trillion by the way!

I know that there are lots of stats there but those stats are truly extraordinary. Obviously the potential is huge and they are only the tip of the iceberg. As businesses innovate new ways to interact with consumers the numbers can only go up.

The emergence of new digital infrastructure such as wireless networks, mobile devices and positioning technologies, is the next move as digital technology becomes embedded into the public spaces, architectures, furniture and the fabric of the publics daily lives.

With the increase in connection speeds brought about by 3G and 4G all add up to a genuinely radical shift in the way we live our lives. Consuming pretty much everything from music and books to education and shopping. We are already targeted by what we have looked at on the internet and soon we will be target by where we are in the country, town or even the shop we are in.

Exploitations of those opportunities will be led by the next generation of digital pioneers and they will be the ones who realise the potential, searching for new avenues to raise revenue by interacting with consumers in new and innovative ways.

Its no surprise that businesses are striving to position themselves to make the most of the ever-expanding sector, and days like Black Friday (the last Friday In November) and Cyber Monday (the first Monday before Christmas) are now eagerly anticipated events by consumers as chances to grab a Christmas bargain.

In a blog full of stats, we saved the best till last; there are now more mobile devices in the world than toothbrushes. That means that either people arent brushing their teeth enough or the number of mobile devices is growing scarily quickly!

If its the latter then I suggest we all use Black Friday or Cyber Monday to buy more toothbrushes or businesses should prepare themselves for the coming growth.

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