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Card Factory focuses on customer experience to grow spending on and offline despite high street challenges

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Card Factory today said that its focus on the customer experience had helped boost the amount its average shopper spent with it online and off in “a challenging UK high street environment” where footfall was down. 

Card Factory, a Top500 retailer in IRUK Top500 research, said in a third-quarter trading statement that it had seen revenues grow across all channels by 5% in the nine months to October 31, and by 21.9% online. Ecommerce sales had grown by 70.9% over the same period last year. In the third quarter of this year alone they were up by 16.2%.

The retailer expects to open a net 50 new stores in its full financial year, of which a net 38 had opened by the end of October. As of October 31 it had 1,010 stores including 11 in the Republic of Ireland.

As well as selling through its own stores it is continuing to expand its business through third-party retailers. It expects to have delivered on its agreement to supply cards to 440 Aldi stores by the end of this month, and it is to roll out in Australian branches of The Reject Store in January.

Karen Hubbard, Card Factory chief executive, said: “I am pleased with our year-to-date performance. Our ongoing focus on customer experience, and the quality and range of our card and complementary non-card products, has led to an increased average spend both in stores and online. This has helped us to substantially offset the effect of the lower high street footfall experienced in the quarter and the corresponding impact on our like-for-like sales.

“We remain on track with our new store roll out and are focused on pursuing other new growth opportunities and retail partnerships to extend our market penetration in the UK and overseas.

“Our quality/value proposition and new product ranges give us confidence that we are well positioned to deliver a good performance in our key Q4 trading period. The board anticipates profits for the full year to be broadly in line with its previous expectations.”

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