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EDITORIAL Supply chain issues hit, just as online demand grows

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In today’s InternetRetailing we’re reporting in a week that supply chain problems have come further into focus in the UK and beyond. We report this week as online demand rises at retailers from Seraphine to DFS, where supply chain issues are front and centre as well. 

Seraphine saw delays in receiving goods from China that meant it could not fully satisfy customer demand in the first half of its financial year. Now that those delays are dealt with, it’s taking steps such as adding extra time for design and to receive goods. Nike has seen strong first quarter revenues, thanks to strong direct demand, including online. But it seems that supply chain problems could be an issue for it too in the not too distant future. 

Meanwhile, DFS has had very strong demand as its sales topped £1bn for the first time, with online sales growing by more than 180%. But customers have experienced long waits for sofas to be delivered. Now it’s expanding its capacity – both in space and personnel – in response.

Royal Mail too has seen issues with international parcel deliveries, which are 12% down on last year. It puts that down to factors from shortages of air freight capacity through to new customs requirements. But its UK parcels business has also seen volumes settle to higher new normal levels in the wake of he Covid-19 pandemic. 

Elsewhere, we’re reporting on how social media platforms from Facebook to Snapchat and TikTok have experienced the retail shift online that the Covid-19 pandemic has brought – and how they’re responding to it. 

And in today’s guest comment, we have three ways that retailers can localise the global shopping experience, courtesy of Nikhita Hyett, of BlueSnap.

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