Survey Finds Retail Bosses are Staying True to Stores

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10th October 2013 16:25 - Retail

According to a report, conducted by the Australian Centre for Retail Studies, more than two thirds of industry executives believe that physical shops are still the most important way for their business to engage with customers, while half (47%) said stores will account for more than half of their sales growth over the coming twelve months – compared to three tenths (31%) for online.

The survey shows that online and mobile shopping is growing in importance, with half (54%) of retailers stating that their online sales will grow significantly over the next two years and a two fifths (39%) expect to see a significant growth in mobile sales.

Findings are published on the back of data from accountancy firm Deloitte that claims smartphones will influence sales by £18bn in UK stores this year – equating to £1 of every £14 spent by consumers.

Among respondents, three fifths (58%) said they plan to expand the store network in their domestic market, compared to two thirds (63%) last year, while half (55%) intend to grow overseas, compared with 52% last year.

Among retailers, three in ten (28%) believe that economic instability could have a strong impact on their business, compared with 45% last year, while the proportion expecting to grow in Western Europe rose from two fifths (39%) to half (47%).

Helen Dickinson, Director-General of the BRC, said:

“Grocery sales have been particularly hard hit. However, we have seen strong demand for children’s footwear and clothing, benefiting from the back-to-school period, and the continued improvement in the UK housing market is beginning to make a difference in the retail sector, shown by a strong performance in home accessories.”

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