Travel makes up third of top 50 online retail sites

Four travel websites have featured in a list of the top ten online retailers in the UK, according to new research by Hitwise and IMRG.

EasyJet, Expedia, Ryanair and BA have taken the sixth, seventh, ninth and tenth positions respectively in the Hot Shop List of the best 50 performing websites for November 2006.

The travel sector has seen two sites enter the top ten, Ryanair and British Airways, who have jumped from eleventh and fourteenth.

Travel websites in the 11 to 20 range include (11) and Thomson Holidays (15).

IMRG chief executive James Roper said: “Only two of the top ten brands have physical stores, as do less than half of all the Hot Shops List retailers – just 24 out of the 50 have a bricks-and-mortar presence.

“For the pure plays, getting visitors to their sites is obviously critical: no traffic, no trade.”

IMRG said it was “surprising” that so many of the offline-based companies were not performing better. The top three sites are Amazon, and Argos.

Other travel sites include BMIBaby (23), Thomson Holiday Destinations (a new entrant at 27), (29), Thomas Cook (30), First Choice (31), MyTravel (34), Jet2 (36), Travelodge (38), Superbreak (a new entrant at 39), (41), InterContinental Hotels (43) and Ebookers (50).

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