The latest analysis of the British retail sector by digital identity specialists, ID Crypt Global, suggests that the nation’s high-streets could be in for another welcome boost this January where retail sales are concerned, as savvy shoppers flock to the sales to help ease the impact of the cost of living crisis.
The figures show that last year, January retail sales totalled £30.168bn across Britain, up by a huge 12.5% year on year versus January 2021 when the nation was in the grips of the pandemic.
This annual growth was largely driven by non-food stores (+41.6%) such as clothing, footwear and household goods, while a return to physical outlets following lockdown restrictions also saw the level of retail spend across online stores drop by -1.3% year on year.
Although the retail sector failed to return to the pre-pandemic levels seen in January 2020, when total spend hit £34.290bn, the £30.168bn spent in January of last year was by far the second highest total seen in over a decade.
The good news is that this total spend is also forecast to climb again this year, with ID Crypt estimating that consumers will spend some £30.836bn within the retail sector this January.
While this will still sit some way below the 2020 peak, it will mark a further 2.2% increase on the positive growth seen last year.
CEO and Founder of ID Crypt Global, Lauren Wilson-Smith said, “High streets up and down the nation have been struggling to remain relevant in a world where online retail has become the go to and this has caused retail sales to stutter in recent years. However, the January sales present the perfect opportunity to entice consumers away from their keyboards and into bricks and mortar stores in search of a bargain.
While the pandemic proved problematic for obvious reasons where physical shopping was concerned, we saw a resurgence in retail spend levels in January of last year and we expect 2023 to continue this positive trend.
This increased spend is likely to be driven by those in search of a bargain when it comes to day to day use items, such as clothing or household goods, as the cost of living crisis continues to spread them very thin financially.”