John Lewis sales back on track thanks to cooler weather…

May 30, 2011

John Lewis, the department store and owner of Waitrose, saw their sales rise by 6% last week, not least because of the cooler weather, which encouraged consumers to spend time on the high street.

In the week to May 21, like-for-like sales excluding VAT rose 1.5pc, an improvement from the first half of the month when sales on the like-for-like basis dropped.

TV sales went through the roof last May ahead of the football World Cup, without a summer competition this year sales in the Electricals department didn’t see the same boom.

The best overall performer was women’s fashion, which saw sales rise by an impressive 21.8%, with the fashion department performing best overall, up 11.3%.

Naturally, as the weather turned slightly colder, shoppers favoured comfort food to keep them a little warmer; and boosted by the sales of soup, coffee and potatoes, total sales rose by 6.4pc.

Within the John Lewis branches, Trafford was the top-performing store with an 11.6pc increase, followed not so closely by Cribbs Causeway at 4.7pc. It wasn’t entirely good news, as some stores still struggled; most notably the Poole and High Wycombe stores, down 21pc and 12pc respectively.

David Barford, director of selling operations, Region B John Lewis had this to say: “As I write this we have started the week well, but we should continue to make the most of all the opportunities that we have with an outstanding assortment range and the focus that all areas of the business have on ensuring we exceed our customers’ expectations.”

Online sales were also up 28.3%, helped by strong fashion and womenswear sales.

So all in all it’s generally good news for John Lewis, they are finding positives in what is, let’s be honest, dark times for retail.

Perhaps this is just a sign of good things to come for retail!