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Online shift seen in Retail Barometer

The Retail Barometer – recently published in Progressive Housewares magazine – shows how independents adapted to address the shift in consumer shopping habits during 2020. The 16th edition of the annual survey gathered data from independent cookshops and housewares stockists from across the UK, looking back at 2020 as well as forward into 2021 and beyond.

Some 68% of the Retail Barometer respondents are currently selling online, to varying extents. There was a notable shift showing the need for ecommerce in the pandemic, with nearly a third of these (30%) having started to sell online in the past year.

Collectively, for all the respondents, 71% of total sales were via the physical shops in 2020 versus 29% online. However, ecommerce growth rose to third position in the list of ‘positive influences on business in 2020’. It had been in eight position in the previous Retail Barometer.

Meanwhile, the independent retailers’ list of ‘negative influences on business in 2020’, sees suppliers’ websites selling directly to consumers at number three on the list for 2020 (up from sixth place in 2019).

Online discounting and the dominance of Amazon is what most independents would change if they had one wish. Not surprisingly, 91% of respondents regard major online operators in the housewares industry (such as Amazon) as a threat, with half of all respondents classifying these as a ‘serious threat.’

To read the full findings of the PH Retail Barometer, see Progressive Housewares March/April.



Top: The pandemic has seen a major shift towards online shopping. Photo: Negative Space, Pexels.

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