Deloitte comments on latest ONS retail sales data
17 January 2014
Commenting on today’s ONS retail sales figures, Ian Geddes, UK head of retail at Deloitte, said: “Today’s results indicate a successful festive season for the majority of retailers, significantly improving on last year. Undoubtedly, we have seen polarised performances, with those that held their nerve in the run-up to Christmas reaping the rewards. In addition, retailers that were able to provide flexible delivery won over consumers, as their confidence in next-day delivery and click-and-collect services rose. Overall, the winners heavily outweighed the losers.
“Across the categories, department stores, technology and clothing all did well. In contrast, the supermarkets suffered a difficult Christmas due to a variety of factors including the rise of the discounters, a more frugal attitude to buying food and a fall in inflation. Online sales leapt up, but retailers should not underestimate the role of the store. As click-and-collect becomes the fulfilment service of choice, brands must ensure they capitalise on the footfall and maximise the opportunity for additional sales. This is all the more important given the continued strain on consumers’ purse strings. The retail industry will look forward to the coming year as the economy continues to improve, but the golden question remains – when will this translate into more pennies in wallets?”
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