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UK charities turning to selling online to ‘plug’ funding gap, report finds

The data found that the average charity shop in the UK lost over £33,000 in income when high streets closed during the lockdown periods

UK charities are turning to online shop sales to help plug a large funding gap in the wake of the pandemic, according to data from the Charity Retail Association (CRA).

The data found that the average charity shop in the UK lost over £33,000 in income when high streets closed during the lockdown periods.

Shopiago, which helps sell shop donations online however, reported a 151% increase in the number of items sold by charities via its online platform in six months (between February and July 2021) with the majority of sales taking place via eBay.

Thom Bryan, head of product at Shopiago, said: “Charities across the country are increasingly understanding that online can significantly support in-store revenue.

“In fact, online sales have provided a funding lifeline for many charities during the pandemic, when their high street shops have shut and fundraising events haven’t happened.”

Jonathan Mail, head of public affairs at the CRA, added: “Many charities are switched on to the benefits of selling donated items online, which has provided vital support during the tough times of the last 18 months.

“Bricks and mortar shops will always be the lifeblood of the charity retail sector, not only for sales, but for collecting donations, and finding the treasures that fetch good prices online.”

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