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EDITORIAL 2023 RetailX UK Top500 names the retailers that have the key to success in challenging times

Digital has proved the key to success for many retailers. Image: Fotolia

In today’s InternetRetailing newsletter we’re reporting as we launch this year’s RetailX UK Top500 2023. The report names the Elite and Leading retailers for 2023, following a year in which retailers have once more had to adapt to the way customers want to buy in a cost-of-living crisis – which is also affecting their own costs, The report features an interview with Sherilyn Paterson, group operations director at JD Group, on how JD Sports, named an Elite retailer for the first time, is using omnichannel in its ambition to be a global powerhouse in its field. 

Today, Toolstation parent company Travis Perkins reports a “challenging year” as its costs rise but its like-for-like sales dip. The trade and DIY supplier has slowed the pace of store rollouts and is also investing in a new distribution centre that will start operations by handling online orders later this year. 

Ocado Retail is focusing on recovery – of both its sales and its profitability – following a 2022 in which it won more customers but those customers are spending less than they did a year ago. The update comes as joint owner Ocado reports full-year figures showing continued momentum in its third-party technology and services business. 

AO World, meanwhile, is raising its full-year profit forecast after the actions it is taking to cut costs paid off sooner than expected. The owner of previously signalled a “laser focus” on profits and cash. 

Primark owner ABF says in a half-year trading update that consumer spending is ‘more resilient’ than expected – with sales at the value fashion retailer almost a fifth up on last year – but that rising costs will hit profit margins. The retailer says its website rollout and its click and collect trial are both continuing.

Marks & Spencer is rolling out packaging-free click and collect to 251 stores, following a successful trial. The multichannel retailer is aiming to reduce plastic through its ‘bring your own bag’ approach.

In today’s guest comment, Kam Zulawski of Dynatrace considers the difference that the customer experience can make to shoppers

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