The UK’s cost of living crisis has driven down sales on the high streets, which turned negative for the first time in more than two years
Total like-for-like retail sales, combining in-store and online, fell by 1.5% overall compared with last May, according to business advisory firm BDO’s latest High Street Sales Tracker.
Online sales fell by 3.3%, one of the lowest results recorded outside of the pandemic, while in-store sales rose by just 1% across the month.
Given the high inflation rates, these figures suggest significant drops in volumes, explains Sophie Michael, head of retail and wholesale at BDO LLP, who called the results “extremely discouraging”.
Michael adds: “With three bank holidays last month and the fact that footfall has increased compared to this time last year, these results highlight the huge pressure on the consumer purse.
“The drop in online sales is also stark, recording the worst online sales results on record with the exception of the months impacted by the Covid-19 pandemic.”