Web sales brighten up M&S results

01 Jul 2009 View Comments
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Online sales at M&S rose while like-for-like sales have seen a decline

The online operation of Marks & Spencer (M&S) generated 28 per cent year-on-year growth in its latest financial quarter, and the retailer said consumer spending appears to be stabilising.

The sales growth at M&S Direct follows the introduction of a project focused on online improvement. Some changes in the navigational structure of the web site have already been introduced and a major refresh is scheduled to go live in the autumn.

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“We are pleased with the improving trend in our performance. This demonstrates that the actions we are taking are working,” said M&S chairman Stuart Rose.

“Consumer confidence appears to be stabilising. However, we remain cautious about the outlook for the remainder of this and next year and will continue to run the business accordingly,” said Rose.

Services such as international delivery, wine club and gift card redemption, with better product availability and order fulfilment capability, are expected to be part of the web site’s new features.

Despite the growth online, UK like-for-like sales at M&S decreased by 1.4 per cent in the 13 weeks to 27 June, after a fourth-quarter drop of 4.2 per cent.

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