Retailers Need a Re-Think on Methods of Advertising and Discounting

Article excerpt

A MASS of retail corporate news has furnished our screens this week. Reports have been mixed but generally it would appear that, whilst our appetite for food leading up to Christmas was unabated, the consumer's desire to buy more and more clothes diminished.

It would seem that consumers are finally realising that there are sales post the festive period and are deciding to spend their cash later than usual.

I never could quite understand why retailers advertise the fact that there will be a store sale on Boxing Day and I imagine retailers will have a re-think about the way they advertise and discount in the future.

Mothercare reported good trade over the festive period with like-for-like sales rising 5.8% on the previous year. However Marks & Spencer failed to sparkle and delivered a bigger than expected fall in sales over the Christmas period with total clothing sales down by 3.3%.

Consequently, David Norgrove, director of clothing, will be leaving. Marks & Spencer had better find a good replacement, because it will need it, especially with the likes of Next breathing down its neck.

The UK's largest electrical retailer Dixons pleased the market with a 4% rise in like-for-like sales over Christmas, helped by clever promotions to woo the customers in. Dixons has done well during the last six months but will need to stay focused.

Sainsbury, the UK's third-largest grocer, reported weaker-than-expected third-quarter sales. …