Drop in footfall blamed on weak half-term figures and “Brexit pantomime”
Published by Retail Gazette on 6th March 2019;
Retail footfall in June benefits from early summer heatwave.
Published by Essential Retail on the 17th Jul 2017
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08:30 PM | Fashion United
Theresa May this week made her long awaited speech about triggering Article
50 to initiate the UK's divorce from Europe. For British fashion brands, retailers and businesses in general, there are
enormous consequences to consider as without free trade between European
nations many brands may not be able to survive.
12:48 PM | Daily Mail
Retail sales are falling at the fastest rate since 2010 in a sign that British households are reining in spending as prices rise, pay stagnates and economic uncertainty prevails, official figures suggested today. While sales rose by a better-than-expected 1.4 per cent last month, volumes were down by 1.4 per cent across the three months to February, the fastest decline in seven years, according to the Office for National Statistics.
Retail sales grew by a stronger-than-expected 1.4% in February as UK consumers ignored Brexit and rising inflation doubts.
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High Street footfall reportedly rose 0.1 per cent in February, compared to a drop of 2.9 per cent in the same period in 2016. The figures, released in Springboard’s monthly footfall report, also showed a small recovery in overall footfall, which fell by 1 per cent in February compared to 1.3 per cent in January.
Legions of “Brexit tourists” flocked to the UK to take advantage of the weak pound over Christmas, triggering a huge rise in spending on foreign credit cards. Foreign shoppers spent more than £725m on the British high street during December, up 22% or an extra £130m compared to the previous year, according to payments processing firm Worldpay.
Retail sales continued to grow at the end of last year as Brits made a late dash for Christmas gifts and festive foods, adding to signs that the economy ended 2016 on a strong note . The British Retail Consortium (BRC) pointed to challenges ahead from rising costs and political uncertainty but said its members went into the new year having enjoyed solid sales growth over the crucial Christmas period.
05:01 AM | City A.M.
Consumer spending received its second highest boost since 2011 last month, even though consumer confidence was flat. Spending growth was 5.1 per cent year-on-year, according to data from Barclaycard. The highest consumer spending growth that Barclaycard recorded (5.5 per cent) was in October.
According to the UK Cards Association “being compliant with PCI DSS means that you are doing your very best to keep your customers valuable information safe and secure and out of the hands of people who could use that data in a fraudulent way. Not holding on to data reduces the risk that your customers will be affected by fraud. If you lose card data i.e. suffer a data breach and you are not PCI DSS compliant you could incur Card Scheme fines for the loss of this data and may be liable for the fraud losses incurred against these cards and the operational costs associated with replacing the accounts. PCI DSS is something that you MUST do.”
How Retail Response can help you reduce the burden of compliance
To gain PCI accreditation our secure storage, shipping, installation and support service processes have been audited by an approved QSA and certified for P2PE compliance. Consequently we can help you by providing competent, secure and exceptionally good value P2PE compliant services for payment systems in stores throughout the UK and beyond.
Our central warehouse has been fitted with additional secure enclosures with controls to ensure that all PED’s are accessible by qualified and authorised staff only. In addition to this constant CCTV surveillance provides further protection from unauthorised access to PED's.
Chain of Custody is maintained throughout all PED installation and support service activities. All equipment movements are tracked on our in-house service management system and tamper inspections are carried out at all points in the process.
One of our fully trained, directly employed team of engineers will bring the PED's to your store having ensured that there has been no unauthorised external interference or tamper between the equipment leaving our warehouse and collection. Any exceptions are reported and the appropriate action taken. Installation and testing is carried out in accordance with documented processes and our engineer will remain on site until your store manager is completely satisfied that everything is in full working order.
We use the same strict security controls when replacing faulty or damaged PED’s. In store support services are provided 7 days per week 365 days per year if required. All decommissioned PED’s are returned to our central warehouse with full tracking as per the outgoing process. From there they are promptly returned for manufacturer repair.
After you've finished your holiday shopping and the shine wears off the cheeky new outfit you bought yourself, will you be able to return it for a refund? More than half of British shoppers don't know that their consumer rights differ when returning goods bought online versus in store, a new report shows.
UK retail sales surged at the fastest rate in more than a decade last month as shoppers splurged on winter clothes and Halloween. Sales were 7.4 per cent higher than the same month last year - the fastest year-on-year growth since April 2002. Online sales were at their strongest for five years...
Reports this week are suggesting that sportswear is set to be one of the biggest overall sellers in 2015, with sales set to surpass £6 billion.
With sportswear giants such as Adidas and Reebok teaming up with celebrity ambassadors like Kanye West and Rita Ora, as well as affordable online retailers such as boohoo.com and MissGuided all offering active wear, sports and gym wear has made the successful crossover to urban chic.
Read more about Britain's sportswear craze and the reasons behind it here.
Businesses should make sure they have someone in place to focus on retail IT systems maintenance this year, as new figures show that sales in the industry have increased in the year to July, with sales in the wholesaling sector exceeding expectations and motor trades sales continuing to increase.
The CBI's Distributive Trades Survey has revealed that 36 per cent of retailers saw sales volumes increase in July in comparison to the previous year, with 30 per cent further expecting volumes to grow in the year to August - although at a slower rate.
CBI distributive trades chairman and Asda's chief customer officer Barry Williams said however that while the UK economy is looking better, businesses are still likely to find conditions challenging and as such they should be monitoring the situation carefully.
"Summer trading is traditionally slower across the retail sector but warm weather can often provide a welcome boost, as we saw towards the end of June and the beginning of this month," he remarked.
This comes as the CBI revealed that the rate of economic growth in the UK strengthened in the three months leading up to July. Its latest growth indicator showed a reading of +20% across the retail, manufacturing and service sectors, compared to +14% in June.
The group put this down to a faster rate of growth in professional services and business, with expectations remaining robust and companies predicting that growth will continue to strengthen in the coming three months.
CBI head of economic analysis Anna Leach did say, however, that the strength of the pound is still causing problems for exporters keen to sell within the EU.
Companies with retail system services will need to make sure they are used to the highest level of efficiency.
Making sure your sales team is well trained in sales means you will make a big return on any tools you give them.
1. One of the most popular techniques for sales is to ‘make a friend’. This means that you should be picking up on things you can comment on positively with a new customer. Comment on their hair, say that you think it would go well with a particular item of clothing you sell for example. You then need to try to relate to them based on what you have picked up on. This can’t be done by rote, it must be genuine and spontaneous.
2. Challenge perceptions on value if they offer them. They may for example, be unwilling to shell out a lot for a particular product as they have done so before with little pay off. Show them ways in which your products are different, and be transparent about why they are buying.
3. Despite that, you should always sell people on value. Make sure that they know that you are offering a good value product but making it clear how you have reached the price you are offering and make sure you let them know you understand how the product will fulfil their requirements.
4. Cross sell appropriate products and make sure they have everything they need for whatever it is they are buying for. Is it an event or are they buying for home improvements. Let them know everything you can offer them.
Read more tips in Business Know How.
Companies looking into retail hardware support might also want to consider ensuring that their bricks and mortar stores provide contactless payment facilities in order to keep up with consumer demand.
According to new research from Lloyds Bank Cardnet, 12 per cent of people do not think that enough retailers currently offer this, while nine per cent think that the spending limit of £20 is too low.
The biggest advantages from a customer perspective for using contactless payment is speed and ease of shopping, although 40 per cent did state that they would not be deterred from spending their money in a shop if contactless payment was not readily available.
A debate does seem to be ongoing regarding the spending limit for contactless, however. While some think that £20 is too low, 57 per cent said they would not want it to be increased to more than £30.
“Whilst certain consumers have currently said that they do not mind shopping with businesses that do not offer this facility, we would anticipate that, as more and more people become comfortable with paying through contactless, and appreciate the ease of it, expectations around retailers offering it will increase,” director of commercial cards and acquiring solutions with Lloyds Banking Group Aidene Walsh said.
By providing contactless payment, you will also enable your customers to make use of Apple Pay, the latest development to come out of the technology giant that allows people to pay for goods and services using their iPad, Apple Watch and iPhone.