John Lewis credits ‘bricks and clicks’ success for ‘decisive’ market share gain

John Lewis has credited its omnichannel strategy with boosting sales for the full year as it delivered ‘decisive’ market share gains and announced plans to sponsor the Commonwealth Games this year.

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John Lewis credits omnichannel strategy for ‘decisive’ market share gains as it announces plans to sponsor the Commonwealth Games.

Total sales from both stores and online were up 7.4 per cent year on year for the full-year to 25 January and up 8 per cent for the half-year. However, sales growth has fallen since a year ago when its six months sales increased 13.6 per cent, although this is probably due to the higher rate of store openings last year compared to this.

Online growth continues to outperform stores’, with ecommerce sales up 20.7 per cent year on year for the 26 weeks to 25 January. This is down from growth of 39.6 per cent a year ago, although online continues to power John Lewis’ total sales increases.

John Lewis managing director Andy Street says: “Our story again has been one of ‘bricks and clicks’ success. Johnlewis.com continued to lead as if to underline what a powerhouse online has become for us.”

Speaking to Marketing Week earlier this month, Street said marketing activity had played a key role in its success, playing a fundamental role in helping to pull all its activity together. Last year it ran campaigns including the Bear and the Hare Christmas campaign and the first ever TV ads for its insurance business, as well as launching its loyalty scheme, My John Lewis.

Street hints that John Lewis has further big marketing plans this year.

“We go into the new trading year with a precious commodity: momentum. Moreover, we have lots of plans to stand out from the crowd in 2014,” he adds.

Those plans include a new sponsorship of the Commonwealth Games, which this year is being held in Glasgow. The department store chain has been unveiled as the “Official Department Store Provider” for the event and will furnish the Athletes’ Village.

The deal will also see John Lewis sell event merchandise both online and in dedicated Glasgow 2014 shops that will open in its Scottish stores in Glasgow, Edinburgh and Aberdeen later this year. It joins brands including Ford, BP and Virgin Media in sponsoring the games. 

John Lewis says the sponsorship follows the success of its support of London 2012, which helped to boost brand awareness and drive up sales through merchandise and its own celebratory range “Celebration of Britain”. John Lewis has plans to make its stores a central part of the celebrations though marketing events and will also offer holders of its loyalty card the chance to get tickets for events at the Commonwealth Games.

John Lewis retail director Andrew Murphy says: “There was so much excitement around the Olympic and Paralympic Games in London and I think Glasgow 2014 will build on this to create a true legacy for our Partners, Scotland and the wider UK.”

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