Argos today reported growing ecommerce sales, as sales over mobile devices more than doubled.
In an interim management statement, the multichannel general retailer’s parent company Home Retail Group said some 42% of Argos sales in the 13 weeks to June 1 involved the internet, up from 41% a year ago. Mobile sales grew particularly quickly, up by 114% on last year.
Argos total sales over the period rose by 1.2% to £828m. Like-for-like sales, stripping out the effect of store openings and closures, were up by 1.9%.
The company said sales of consumer electronics were up, thanks to growing sales of tablet computers and TVs alongside white goods and electricals. However video gaming and audio sales were down.
At sister company Homebase , total sales were up by 0.2% at £422m, while like-for-likes rose by 1.4%.
Terry Duddy, chief executive of Home Retail Group, said: “Argos has delivered a good start to the year driven by continued success in consumer electronics and electricals, supported by growing internet and mobile commerce sales. Overall, its trading has been consistent with our expectations.”
He added: “Whilst we expect consumer spending to remain subdued, we are on track with delivering our investment plans to drive the long-term development of both Argos and Homebase.”
Scott Dacko, associate professor of strategic marketing and management at Warwick Business School, says Argos is on the right track.
Scott Dacko said: “While Argos’ short-term results were clearly affected by an uncontrollable seasonal factor – namely the UK weather – their strategic efforts aimed at improving the retail experience for their customers are highly commendable.
“They recognise the importance of growing online sales and facilitating sales through mobile devices, for example, and overall, they are transforming themselves for the digital age. If they can further their efforts in supply chain management (covering production, transport, distribution and other logistics, along with the technical and financial considerations) and data analytics to a point where they are able to respond even faster to unexpected developments affecting consumer demand such as the weather, they will be in even better shape to meet the fast-changing demands of consumer retail.”