UK Retail Sales Up 4.7% in March
Retailers experienced the ‘strongest growth in almost a year’ with the high street surpassing online stores
Retail store sales for March grew by 3.2% compared to the same month last year, which declined by 1.7%, according to research by the high street monitoring group British Retail Consortium (BRC) and KPMG.
The report, titled ‘BRC-KPMG Retail Sales Monitor’, revealed that total retail sales also rose by 4.7% in March, the highest incline since October 2014 with e-commerce sales also up; growing by 12.3%.
The surge in retail sales is said to be the result of consumer buying over the Easter break, but the report indicates that uncertainty over the upcoming election ‘could cast a shadow over the long term recovery of the sector.’
Despite signs that bricks and mortar stores played a greater role in the increase of retail sales (e-tailers contributing 1.4%), the report still asserted the importance for retail businesses to have a digital presence.
David Mc Corquodale, KPMG head of retail, explained:
“Good weather and the long Easter break saw shoppers choose shops over screens as they hit the high street and enjoyed the sunshine. Many retailers used this trend to their advantage, launching digital campaigns to drive footfall in stores by tempting shoppers in with emails promoting new ranges and money off vouchers.
“This demand-led approach proves that online and in-store are simply two sides of the same coin for a successful retailer.”