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Weekly Winners in Retail

Weekly Winners in Retail – 10.08.20

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In a week which saw England embrace the ‘Eat Out to Help Out’ government scheme, retailers watch on anxiously to see whether the initiative will have a ripple effect on both consumer confidence, footfall and sales. Whilst we await the results on whether the economy has been boosted, we are celebrating our latest good news stories.

Fashion brand UNIQLO embrace sales increase

When: 4th August

What’s the news?

UNIQLO benefits from a rise in sales by 4.7% during July when their full complement of stores had reopened post-lockdown. The increase also coincides with customers continuing to buy loungewear and an increase in online sales demand by 26.2% in June.

Online and offline drives UNIQLO sales growth

Source: Retail Gazette

What do we expect to see?

We have learnt over the last four months that the only thing that is constant in retail is change. No week or month is the same, with customers pivoting between online and physical store. Demand for products continue to change, as we now see a divide in the population, with some consumers now willing to socialise again and others are happy to stay at home. Understanding customer behaviour trends using data sources such as Google Trends, ShopperTrak and the IMRG should all be used to help form retailers trading plans.

AO.com announce more new hires with further growth of their AO Logistics

When: 31st July

What’s the news?

Following the opening of AO.com’s new Logistic Hub based in Crewe, AO.com have announced the creation of 250 new roles. The recruitment drive is the result of customers turning to online shopping for products during the Covid-19 lockdown in addition to the partnerships which have been made, where brands such as Aldi, The Cotswold Company, Simba and Keter have benefitted from AO’s growing logistics capability.

AO’s logistic proposition continues to drive forward

Source: Essential Retail

What do we expect to see?

What is interesting about this story is not just the new jobs being created, but one of the reasons for this. AO now offer a fulfilment service as a proposition to complementary brands, building a secondary business model. As a result of Covid, we expect that more retailers will be looking to find new ways to monetise their proposition.

Another element that we like about this story is the additional benefits that AO give their employees through an additional incentive scheme to earn more money, linked to the success of the business. At RetailRecovery we would welcome more employers adopting this, as long as it’s in areas which the employee can directly influence.

Frasers Group announce first regional flagship post lockdown

When: 5th August

What’s the news?

Mike Ashley’s Frasers Group has signed for its first new regional flagship store post Covid-19 at Leicester’s out-of-town shopping destination, Fosse Park. The store will be split into two, supporting the Flannels designer fashion brand along with Sports Direct. Both stores are expected to open in 2021, creating an additional 200 jobs.

Sports Direct and Flannels new flagship store in Leicester

Source: The Retail Bulletin

What do we expect to see?

What has been acknowledged by Mike Ashley and his team is the need to continue to build its new flagship store outside of the city centre, where footfall demand is expected to be higher than city centre locations. We expect that the team will also be improving the instore purchase experience, with Michael Murray, head of elevation for Frasers Group, said: “I’m proud to be in a position to bring positive news in what has been a tough 6 months for retail. This announcement shows our commitment and confidence in our elevation strategy. Now more than ever, we must continue to push boundaries and innovate to stay relevant.”

Want to transform your retail operation?

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Alternatively, you can download our FREE Covid-19 retail strategy whitepaper, containing more than 110 practical recommendations, to help you navigate today’s current climate and plan for business growth.


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