Figures published by the Local Data Company show that 16.7% of shops in Scotland are unoccupied, up 1.3 percentage points on six months ago.
This compares to a rate of 14.6% for Great Britain as a whole, a figure that has increased 30 basis points since the beginning of 2012.
The report, called Too Many Shops, showed that all areas of Great Britain, aside from London, have seen rises in vacancy rates as the United Kingdom slipped back into recession.
Richard Dodd, of the Scottish Retail Consortium, told The Herald: "There is no question that Scottish customers feel less well off and less able to spend than generally across the UK."
He added: "A lot of high streets have got long-standing difficulties which are being exacerbated by the economic situation."
Matthew Hopkinson, director at the Local Data Company, said that all areas are being hit by falling consumer spending and rising costs.
But he added that there is a "widening gap" between town centres depending on factors such as their location and consumer profile.
Scotland's shopping areas had fewer vacancies than Wales, where 18.5% of shops were vacant. It is also performing better than many areas of England, such as the north-west, which had a vacancy rate of 20.1%.
Vacancies in London fell from 10.7% to 10.1%.
Margate suffered the highest vacancy rate of 36.5%, while Nottingham was the worst performing big centre with more than 30% of its sites empty. The best performing centres are in the south of England, led by Salisbury, which had a vacancy rate of 7.7%.
The Local Data Company report said that consumer spending has fallen to 2002 levels.
It added that increasingly sophisticated mobile technology is boosting the popularity of on-line sales, which are expected to hit 13.2% of all transactions by the end of the year.
Liz Peace, chief executive of the British Property Federation, said: "Our towns face complex structural problems which are not going to be solved by tinkering around the edges. In many places, we need to have a complete re-think about how vacant property could be redeveloped into new uses."
The Scottish Retail Consortium's own figures show that vacancy rates in Scotland are in line with the rest of the United Kingdom.
The SRC data has a greater weighting to primary shopping sites, while the Local Data Company looks more at secondary properties.
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