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EDITORIAL How retailers are responding in challenging times

Image: Samuel Pollard/Unsplash

Image: Samuel Pollard/Unsplash

In today’s InternetRetailing newsletter we’re reporting as a growing number of retailers announce plans to shut shops and in some cases suspend online deliveries on Monday, as a mark of respect on the day of Queen Elizabeth II’s funeral. Retailers from Sainsbury’s to B&Q and Ikea are planning to pause deliveries so that staff can mark the national day of mourning.

We’re also continuing to report on the cost of living crisis and how retailers are responding to that challenge. Ocado says it’s seeing more customers buying from it. But while orders are up, average basket values are down as shoppers trade down to less expensive brands in order to mitigate the fast rising cost of living. The online grocer says that it now expects to report a small full-year decline in sales, while earnings are expected only to break even. It’s taking action, by expanding its value range and working to reduce fast-rising costs.

That’s similar to other actions described by Kantar, which says food inflation is growing fast and with “no end in sight”.

New research from the DMA comes today in the light of that cost-of-living crisis, and shows how shoppers are reacting – from the categories they are cutting back on, to the retailer actions that make a difference to whether they buy from one brand or another. Interestingly, 40% say they won’t buy again from a brand that shops making offers.

We also report today on Descartes research into sustainable delivery that suggests shoppers in the UK as well as markets around the world will expect to see carbon light delivery options in the future, with significant numbers already prepared to wait longer and pay more for such services.

And we report as the British Footwear Association works with ShoeAI, with the aim of using technology to reduce what it says is fast becoming an overstock crisis.

In today’s guest comment, Alex Laurie of ForgeRock warns of the importance of staying ahead of a tide of data breaches.

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