Deloitte comments on today’s ONS retail sales figures
19 February 2016
Commenting on today’s ONS retail sales figures, Ben Perkins, head of consumer business research at Deloitte, said:
“January’s retail sales values have risen by 2.4% year-on-year. These figures demonstrate just how strong the post-Christmas sales period was for the retail industry, with ongoing promotions and discounting of Christmas stock continuing to drive the growth of sales into the New Year.
“Strong growth was also evident in the value of online sales, which rose by 10.4% year-on-year and increased by 2.7% from December 2015. Online sales accounted for 13% of all retail sales in January 2016. This is significant because it shows that online spending in the run-up to Christmas was not a blip; we may now be entering the next phase of e-commerce growth.
“Department stores have had a particularly strong January, having seen online sales rise 28% year-on-year. This is a clear recognition of their success in shifting to an omnichannel business model. Other retailers may need to adapt their business strategies in order to capitalise on changing consumer behaviours and shopping habits.
“The year has so far provided near-perfect conditions for retailers, who find themselves in a real sweet spot. Low inflation, cheaper fuel prices, rising consumer confidence and high employment would point the way towards near-perfect trading conditions, despite some uncertainties on the horizon. As the year goes on, it will be interesting to see which retailers successfully capitalise on these conditions.”
Notes to editors
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