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Ikea posts 31% rise in online sales as it makes products more accessible across sales channels

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Ikea today unveiled UK online sales up by almost a third after focusing on making cross-channel shopping more convenient for its customers.

Some 13.4% of total sales of £1.72bn took place over the internet in the year to August 31. While overall sales grew by 8.9%, the fastest growth came online, with ecommerce sales 31% higher than at the same time last year.

Online visits grew by 6%, while visits to the store were 3% ahead and store sales grew by 5.3%.

The growth came as the home furnishings retailer invested in making its products accessible to customers whether they shop in store, online or shop across the channels by picking up online orders from the store. Over the year, Ikea UK focused on the multichannel shopping experience, trialling four new order and collection points in Aberdeen, Birmingham, Westfield at Stratford City and Norwich, while opening a new store in Reading.

“As part of our ambition to become a truly multichannel retailer, we launched a new website to provide an improved online experience for our customers as well as further connecting the online and offline channels,” said Ikea UK country retail manager Gillian Drakeford. “Our stores and website have a different, although integrated, role to play. Our customers are increasingly using both channels to complete their purchasing journey so we’ve focused on ensuring this experience is as seamless as possible.”

She added: “We want to make sure that Ikea is accessible, so that more people can create a better everyday life at home. In July, we opened our first new Ikea store in the UK for seven years in Reading and we look forward to opening in Sheffield in 2017.”

Ikea, which was founded in Sweden but now has its headquarters in the Netherlands and is a Top100 retailer in IRUK Top500 research, aims to double its UK business by 2020. In the last year its UK market share grew to 8.2%.

Drakeford said: “Achieving our fifth consecutive year of growth is something we’re extremely proud of and demonstrates the success of our values-driven business, commitment to our people, the planet and our customers.”

Fast growth was seen in the cooking department (+17.9%) and in mattresses (+18.8%). Over the year Ikea created 1,700 jobs, taking the UK total to 10,000 and introducing the living wage across its business.

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