John Lewis' Home directorate had a record sales week and this was reflected in its year-on-year increase of +0.6%.
With the final few shopping days before Christmas still to come, last week John Lewis achieved sales of ￡160.6m +6.5% week on week, confirming its expectation that customers are choosing to leave their Christmas shopping right up until the last minute. The year on year comparison at -2.4% reflects the changing shape of Christmas trade with an early peak at the end of November. Online sales had a steady performance at +5.5% year-on-year.
The weekend saw customers' focus firmly shift to shops, with branches up and down the country packed with Christmas shoppers and standout year-on-year performances from Chichester +10.6%, Chester +7.6% and Swindon +4.8%. John Lewis is giving customers an extra day to order Click & Collect items to any shop, by extending the cut off date for orders to Tuesday 23rd December for collection in store on Christmas Eve. This week, Click & Collect orders were up 30.3% year on year.
In Home, the record week reflected the strength of John Lewis' own-brand range, which is selling well right up to Christmas, ahead of discounting when Clearance starts online on Christmas Eve. Impressive growth came right across its own brand home ranges including fitted furniture +11% and bed linen +6% year-on-year.
Andrew Murphy, retail director of John Lewis, says: "Last week we said it's all to play for and that is still absolutely the case as we have seen a building trend of customers leaving their gift purchases right up until the last minute. The record levels of trade in our fashion and home assortments are hard won in what has been a challenging market. However, busy though? our shops have been over the past week, it's only in these final pre-Christmas days that many customers are finally moving to complete their gift buying and other purchases. Consequently our Partners are standing ready for a very busy final trading day before the festive break."