The Office for National Statistics recently reported that the number of goods sold in June increased by 13.9%, exceeding the expectations of 8% growth. These figures suggest that the retail sector is recovering following the three-month lockdown period. There has also been an increasing number of shoppers visiting stores in person; the proportion of online spending reduced to 31.8% in June and remains a considerable increase from the 20% reported in February.
Furthermore, June also saw non-food stores - including department and clothes shops - partially recovering from strong falls during the lockdown but were still 15% lower than in February. While this growth is amazing news for the retail sector, there is still much debate over what the future holds, as companies across the country adapt to the new era of retail operations and consumer behaviour.
Will Broome, Founder and CEO of retail-tech company Ubamarket, has been on the front lines of innovation in the retail sector, helping companies to revolutionise their operations by integrating with mobile technology. Now, Will discusses the lay of the land with regards to British retail and explores what the future might hold for retailers and consumers alike: “The news of June's sales growth is fantastic news for both the retail sector and the wider economy, and it is more important than ever that we are able to sustain this growth.
In order to do so, the whole shopping experience must be revitalised and transformed to raise consumer confidence by diversifying their sales channels, boost their online presence and truly revolutionise the in-store experience. This would aid in creating an environment for customers that is not only safe and hygienic, but truly personalised and experiential. Retail technology is one option which offers a solution to a number of these challenges, enabling retailers to easily uphold safety guidelines whilst also hyper personalising and improving the convenience of the in-store experience.
I am extremely interested to see how the retail sector fares in the coming months, and as an industry leader in the field of mobile technology for retail and hospitality, the Ubamarket team has got a lot of work to do to help retailers orient themselves in this new landscape and usher in this new age of British retail!”.