Shoppers in Scotland Buying Just the Essentials

Everyday saversIn Scotland, the latest retail figures for February were “less bad” than the previous months, but say that shoppers are sticking to essential purchases.

The total sales were down 0.6% according to the Scottish Retail Consortium (SRC).

On the other hand, the drop was not as bad compared to previous months, however the SRC said it was still the worst February performance since they started the survey.

Sales of food did well as customers stocked up after the Christmas period.

Total food sales increased by 3.4% compared with a year ago, although the SRC pointed out that it was lower than the rate of inflation, so customers actually bought less than 1 year ago.

Non food sales dropped by 4.4% and the SRC said that white goods and other big ticket items suffered the most.

On the like for like measure, which doesn’t include the effect of new store openings, all sales fell by 1.7%, non food dropped by 4.8% and food sales grew by 1.6%.

Director of the SRC, Ian Shearer, said “Food did better than in January as people restocked but most non-food goods struggled seriously.

“Especially for big-ticket items, it’s taking margin-sapping discounts to generate the sales that are happening because many customers are still afraid to spend where they don’t have to.”

Head of retail in Scotland for KPMG, said, “Until an upturn is truly felt through jobs, wages or net income, it seems that no level of promotion or discounting from the retailer can really lift the gloom.

“Many retailers feel they are fighting hard just to stand still at best and don’t see any light at the end of the tunnel.”

He added, “However, there are retailers out there who deliver what the customer wants and needs – in terms of product, brand and price – which proves that if the proposition is spot-on it is still possible to outperform the market and the competition.”

It’s not just supermarkets struggling in the economic climate, so are manufacturers, UK restaurant insurance providers, suppliers and restaurants. However, it seems that supermarkets are adapting to customers’ needs like providing value food and meal deals.

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