John Lewis hails “outstanding” Christmas

John Lewis has reported an “outstanding” rise in sales over the festive trading period, bolstered by its pre-Christmas marketing campaign.

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The department store group, recorded sales of £545m for the five weeks to 1 January, a 9% increase on the previous year. Like-for-like sales rose 7.6% despite the impact of snow on the high street.

Electricals and home technology sales rose 14.4%, while fashion and beauty increased 8.7% and home increased by 4.7%.

The department store’s online business for its financial year to date has also reached £500m for the first time,recording a 42% increase on the previous year.

John Lewis’ total sales for the period increased 26.2% when compared to two years ago, demonstrating the chain’s recovery since the recession.

Andy Street, managing director of John Lewis, says the figures demonstrate the department store’s strength as a multi-channel retailer, which helped the chain during the pre-Christmas snow.

The department store chain recorded a record-breaking week of sales, reaching £121m and it’s biggest ever trading day (£27.8m) in the run up to Christmas.

John Lewis used Twitter to drive its Never Knowingly Undersold commitment and communicate its price match offers for the first time in the final quarter.

It also launched a Christmas advertising campaign featuring a cover of Elton John’s “Your Song” sung by Ellie Goulding.

Separately, sister retailer Waitrose, is to expand its store network with 39 new stores in 2011. Of the 39 new stores, 27 will be convenience stores following a successful trial launched in 2009. http://www.marketingweek.co.uk/news/waitrose-pushes-forward-into-convenience/3004846.article

The upmarket grocery chain mirrored the success at John Lewis reporting an 8.9% rise in sales during the five weeks to Christmas Eve.

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