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The online industries that have boomed in 2020

By LLM Reporters on 16th November 2020

In an unprecedented year of lockdowns, travel restrictions and working from home, it’s little wonder that the online market is booming in 2020 – and despite the fact that many people have experienced a hit to their salaries, spending on the internet is still going strong.

2019 was a year of substantial growth, with ecommerce sales surpassing £3 trillion in the UK. This year, it is thought to have grown a further 16 per cent, in spite of the adverse conditions. But online shopping isn’t the only area on the rise, and as many find themselves spending more time at home, and with a greater number of spare hours on their hands than ever, the likes of online casinos, gaming sites and mobile apps have also experienced a boost.

From making day to day life easier to providing a wealth of entertainment and inspiration, today’s key players are the ones that have moved with our evolving needs. If you’re looking to invest in a growing industry before the year is up, then there’s still time to do it – and these four industries are the ones to watch.

Online casinos

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With glamorous nights out at the casino feeling like a thing of the past in 2020, and evenings in at home taking their place, those in search of the adrenaline rush that comes with a good game of poker are instead heading online. Online casinos are a £40 billion industry annually, and over the past few months, have continued to surge – with those looking to while away the hours at the roulette table or with a game of baccarat able to easily do so from the comfort of their sofas.

These days, online gaming offers an immersive experience, along with a more efficient level of customer service than ever thanks to the integration of artificial intelligence. And, since set-up and running costs are far cheaper than those of traditional land-based casinos, and the potential audience many times larger, we may well see online casinos eclipse their more traditional counterparts in the years to come. Click here to find new operators to watch.

Online food delivery platforms

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From luxury dine-at-home services to the more mainstream Deliveroo, online food ordering apps have experienced a huge surge in popularity this year. With restaurants, bars and cafes often closed due to lockdown restrictions, or subject to reduced opening hours and early closures outside of that, eating out has become more difficult – but as more and more restaurants sign up to online ordering services, foodies are increasingly able to get quality cuisine from just about anywhere delivered straight to their doors.

In London, fine dining ordering platforms such as Supper bring a luxury dining experience into the home, paving the way for a national roll-out and for other providers to follow suit. An area of food delivery that has until now remained largely untapped, it’s almost certain to grow further in 2021.

While there’s no doubt that 2020 has been a trying year for most, for the online world, it has provided a welcome boost. With more people relying on the internet to meet their needs now than ever before, it’s an exciting time to invest – and a sizeable pool of potential still remains untapped.

Digital marketing

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The UK has made some impressive strides in digital marketing over the past decade or so, and has never been more vital to all types of companies than it is today. From SEO to social media, there’s no denying that it’s big business, and those looking for somewhere to invest their money will find that it’s a savvy move for the years to come. As more and more businesses move online or seek to grow their existing offerings, demand is stronger than ever – and as digital marketing grows more complex, many companies are hiring out to the professionals to ensure that their needs are met. It’s a skillset that people are willing to pay excellent money for, and a business that can only ever go from strength to strength.

App development

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The rise of app development is nothing new, yet it continues to gather momentum. In 2019, it grew by an impressive 19.4 per cent, and in 2020, with an estimated 79 per cent of the UK population owning a smartphone, the market is stronger than ever. A study conducted by Ibisworld revealed that this is set to continue over the next five years, although these days, with an app already in existence from pretty much everything, finding a gap in the market is becoming trickier, and may somewhat slow the pace.

Even so, advances in app technology are set to transform the industry, with augmented reality and artificial intelligence heralding a new era in development. While the market remains somewhat fragmented, space remains for someone to swoop in and dominate – but who and when that will be remains to be seen.