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Online fashion sales outperform flatlining High Street



Retail sales flatlined in March, showing zero growth, according to the latest sales results released by the Office for National Statistics (ONS).

However, online fashion sales bucked the overall trend, with 3.4% growth the largest of any retail sector. Online clothing gave a strong performance in an otherwise lifeless market, says the home delivery expert Parcelhero.

Parcelhero’s Head of Consumer Research, David Jinks M.I.L.T., said, ‘For the second month in a row, online fashion has brought a splash of colour to an otherwise drab retail market.

In February, online retail clothing sales soared by a massive 7.3% over January and that’s been followed by 3.4% growth in March. That’s higher than any other retail sector, whether online or on the High Street.

‘This may be encouraging news for the beleaguered e-commerce fashion store ASOS. Last week, it reported half-year losses of £120m, with group sales down 18%. ASOS says that, despite these rocky results, it’s sticking with its full-year guidance. February and March’s strong online clothing sales growth results will give the company hope these turnaround targets can be met.

‘Online fashion aside, March was a lacklustre month for retail, with overall sales values (the amount we spent) showing no change over the preceding month, and overall sales volumes (the amount we bought) also showing 0% growth.

‘On the High Street, household goods stores showed the best performance, up 2.4% over February, but a -3.8% slump in sales for department stores dragged down the High Street overall.

‘Online sales as a whole, at least, saw a slight heartbeat, with spending rising 0.1% over February and 1.7% year-on-year. As a result, online picked up a little more of the overall retail market, taking 25.9% of the UK’s entire retail sales in March, up from 25.8% in February. For more than a year now, online sales have held firm at around 25%-26% of the overall market. That is the new normal for retailers and well above the 19% that online was averaging pre-pandemic.

‘As retail settles to this new equilibrium, it will be those retailers with well-integrated in-store and online sales that will ultimately triumph. Retailers must develop an omnichannel approach, embracing both online and physical store sales.

‘The forthcoming launch of Parcelhero Pro will give retailers and their delivery partners the means to interact with customers and provide new services – while avoiding large-scale, in-house tech initiatives and spending.

‘With Parcelhero Pro, businesses will be able to ship in bulk, optimise cost and completely outsource their after-sales customer support. Parcelhero Pro is set for launch in Q2 2024 and investors are now able to fund the growth and marketing of the new platform. The Parcelhero Group has launched its equity funding campaign on Floww, the internationally respected fundraising and investment platform. This enables high net worth individuals (HNWI), angel investors and venture capitalists to invest.

‘The Parcelhero Group has already outpaced all its competitors, with 21% compound annual growth rate (CAGR) in revenue between 2019 and 2022, making it the UK’s fastest-growing logistics comparison group.

‘Parcelhero is looking to achieve initial funding of £700k to ensure Parcelhero Pro’s successful market debut.’

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