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Poundland moves into top 10 in rankings of 500 major UK retailers in Q4

Thursday October 31st 2013

Ahead of Poundland launching its much-mooted transactional website the value retailer's existing informational site has moved up into the top 10 of the UK's best performing retail websites By Glynn Davis

This is according to the latest results from the quarterly testing of the Retail 500 of top UK online stores by Sitemorse. 

Poundland's move up seven places into ninth spot with a score of 6.84 out of 10 follows its climb of 47 places in Q3 and suggests the group is taking its online presence seriously. It is also another example of a value retailer highlighting that efficient websites are not just the domain of the upmarket operators.

Lawrence Shaw, chief executive of Sitemorse, says: “We have long stated that the sites which perform well under the Sitemorse testing come from all parts of the sector. In fact the top 20 names in the fourth quarter include very few high-end names and much more of a presence of cost-conscious operators.”

The testing of the 500 sites is undertaken by Sitemorse using automated software that, page-by-page reads the first 125 pages of each retailer’s sites to generate a ranked table based on checks to Quality, User Experience, Accessibility, Performance and SEO capability of each of the websites.

At the very top of the table there has been very little change since Q3, with four of the top five retailers maintaining their positions. Anoushka London holds its top spot with the same score as last quarter, 9.37, Pownall Carpets is in second place again, KD Beds is still in fourth spot and Greenhalghs Craft Bakery keeps its fifth spot. The new name in the top bracket is third-placed Sofa Workshop that moved up nine places with a score of 7.49.

Judging by these positions it has been a good month for home-wares retailers with three of the top five players plying their trade in this area. Almost related to the category is the biggest climber in the top 20 this quarter, Robert Dyas, which moved up an impressive 147 places into 18th spot.

It is joined by an array of big risers in Q4 that are led by WH Smith, with its move up 329 places into 91st spot. Its score of 4.84 is a radical improvement on its 1.78 in Q3 and represents a good result for the recently-installed new CEO at the company.

Other impressive gainers are: Zara, up 313 places into 117th spot; Cooplands (Doncaster), up 274 places to 75th spot; and Muji, up 280 places to 35th spot.

Yet again there are much fewer serious fallers this quarter, with DFS the most serious of the casualties dropping 287 places into 290th spot – that takes it a long way from its third-place in Q3. Other declining performers include: WJ Daniel & Co that has fallen 259 places into 358th spot; French Connection, down 197 places into 342nd spot; and The White Company, slipped 159 places into 188th spot.

The final ranked table for Q4 includes only 445 retailers because merchants were excluded from the testing if they used assistive technology such as JavaScript, which breaks the general “rules of accessibility” of internet sites, according to Sitemorse. This represents an increase on Q3 when a lesser 449 were excluded.

Click here to view more results

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