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Insight: UK stationery market will add £49.1 million to its value by 2021
Image courtesy of Smiggle

The UK stationery market is set to rise by 2.4% to around £2.1 billion by 2021 according to retail research.

GENERAL MERCHANDISE

Insight: UK stationery market will add £49.1 million to its value by 2021

A report by Verdict Retail predicts that the growth, which defies the ongoing rise of smartphone and tablet ownership, will be driven by the trend of purchasing stationery as a gift, increased product ranges, and design-led products and innovation.

Sarah Johns, associate analyst at Verdict Retail, said: “New entrants have made the sector more competitive and innovative than ever before. Low entry barriers have enabled new market entrants to experiment with product design, which has triggered increased interest in stationery, particularly among those aged 16-24.

“Increased product choice of premium stationery and availability of extra services such as personalisation mean shoppers are increasingly opting for stationery products as gifts.

“UK retailers are benefiting from shoppers who purchase stationery for a variety of occasions. For example, stationery is bought for children for the back to school period, for seasonal holidays such as Christmas, and for other occasions such as birthdays and Mother’s Day.”

A survey conducted by Verdict Retail found that 57.4% of stationery shoppers were female and only 42.6% were male. The report suggests that retailers could increase sales by targeting marketing campaigns towards men as well as women, and by increasing product choice for men.

Within the stationery space, the performances of certain sectors were found to be noticeably better than others. The stationery sub-categories that have seen the fastest growth in terms of value over the past five years were found to be writing and drawing instruments, and accessories. These were also the sub-categories forecast to grow fastest by volume.

Growth of the paper and notepad, storage and ‘other’ sub-sectors were found to be slowing in terms of value, with volumes negative. This is due to the online revolution causing stationery to be used less frequently than decade ago. However, the increased ease and convenience of shopping online has also led to a transformation in channels used to purchase stationery with 9.7% of of those surveyed saying they bought stationery online.

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