Lead Forensics

Retailer sales exceed expectations

Clothing retailers have had to close during the various coronavirus lockdowns across the UK. Consequently, some business analysts have forecast that profits will fall – however, some retailers have achieved sales figures much higher than expected.

Mulberry and John Lewis have both experienced falling sales, but Next, ASOS and Boohoo have done well. Buoyant sales have mainly been achieved by online orders, with the British clothing retailer Joules’ online sales having grown by 35% in 2020, with eCommerce now representing 70% of its overall sales.

The CEO of Joules, Mick Jones, summarised the company’s strategy for increasing sales:

“We have seen strong growth in our customer base during recent months, benefiting from our focus on digital marketing, the attractive locations of our stores and the increasingly broad customer offer through our Friends of Joules digital marketplace.”

Clothing retailers that want to increase online sales face many challenges. The online customer expects a wide product choice, speedy deliveries, great customer service and easy return processes. Extra warehouse capacity must be found and equipped with heavy duty garment rails, packing station equipment and other warehouse equipment that makes the processing of orders efficient. Investing in warehouse management systems can ensure that order processing is quick and accurate.

Though Joules stores are now closed in England with the second lockdown, it has learnt from the experience of the first lockdown how to keep sales up when its stores are closed. Jones is confident that a flexible business model and the strong Joules brand will result in a robust performance, despite COVID-19 issues.

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