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Conclusion – February 2018

ALREADY 2018 is shaping up to be a competitive year in which the retailers that reach out to engage with customers and offer efficient and joined-up cross-channel services seem best placed to succeed. In the UK, retailers of all stripes cited a challenging retail environment and falling footfall on the high street over Christmas and New Year. But amid the gloom there are stories of traders that are prospering. Many of these are enjoying online sales growth that in turn contributes to an overall rise in revenues. Despite the continuing customer appetite for discounts, some are successfully moving away from price cuts in order to make their businesses more profitable.

In this IRUK Top500 report we’ve focused on the ecommerce and multichannel strategies that retailers are using to offer customers the consistent experience that they now expect.

Over the coming year we’ll be continuing to do the analysis, while presenting our findings in more detail through six Top500 Performance Dimension Reports that mirror the sections of this report. We’ll be considering what leading retailers in each dimension do well, what tools they use – and how others can apply these learnings to their own businesses.

At its best, the internet gives the kind of level playing field that high street rents and business rates have never enabled. It enables shoppers from around the world to buy from the retailers that sell products they want or need. We hope that the IRUK Top500 2018 proves a useful tool in enabling retailers of all sizes to serve them.

In the year ahead, we’ll continue to broaden our explorations of retail practice and performance beyond the UK and Europe, focusing too on the Australian and Asean markets.

As always we’re interested in how we can extend our research and improve the quality of our findings. Get in touch with your ideas and potential datasets via or tweet @etail with #IRUK500.

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