John Lewis sales dip 0.3%
John Lewis saw its weekly sales dip by 0.3% last week as the retailer struggled against tough comparatives with same period last year when trade benefited from Mothers Day and the launch of an updated Apple iPad. Sales were also affected by the weeks unseasonably cold weather.
In the week ending 22 March, Electricals and Home Technology was the best performing directorate with sales up by 2.6%. The increase was driven by strong sales of electrical items and audio imaging products. While last year's iPad launch was felt in the communication technology department's year-on-year comparisons, core IT products continued their recent improved performance and finished the week 27% up.
The Home departments increased their sales by 2.1% boosted by strong performances from beds, bed linen and floor coverings. Cooking and dining, home accessories and gifting were impacted by the comparison to Mother's Day last year, although the retailer saw strong trade in lighting with sales rising by 19%.
Fashion sales came in 6% lower than the same period last year as Mother's Day and price matching activity in last year’s figures combined with the poor weather to impact sales of womenswear and accessories.
Within the branches, the 'at home' stores put in the best performances with Tamworth up 27%, Swindon up 17% and Poole up 6.5%. Of the full-line stores, Milton Keynes continued to benefit from its refurbishment with a gain of 4.9%, while Glasgow registered a 3.1% increase.
Online sales at johnlewis.com rose by 6.5% with the retailer seeing a 50% increase in Click & Collect orders overall and an 85% uplift in orders collected via Waitrose.
Peter Ruis, John Lewis buying and brand director, said: "With Easter on the horizon, our marketing campaign launching this week and availability in a really strong position, we're well set for a good result over this important trading period."
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