Commenting on whether Easter is likely to be make-or-break for UK retailers, Paul Martin, UK Head of Retail, said:
“Traditionally, Easter provides a much needed boost for retailers recovering from a post-Christmas lull. However, with it being later this year, retailers are having to hold out for longer.
“Against the backdrop of squeezed margins and tightened purse strings in 2017, there is perhaps more pressure on retailers to ensure the shopping event is a success this year. It’s certainly not all doom and gloom though, with a number of factors likely to encourage strong sales.
“April brings with it the likelihood of warmer weather, nudging shoppers to consider spring fashion collections and perhaps even use the Bank holiday to enjoy their first barbeque of the year. Whatever the weather, Easter traditionally sees friends and family gather, benefitting grocers more than happy to supply the seasonal feast and an Easter egg or two.
“For those looking to make the most of the spare time, the holiday also marks the perfect opportunity for home improvements, much to the delight of retailers offering a helping hand.
“With retail performance in the first quarter of 2017 underwhelming, Easter’s occurrence in April has the potential to get the second quarter off to a flying start. That said, it remains to be seen if any progress made on sales can outweigh the additional challenges the industry faces in the new financial year, including the introduction of the apprenticeship levy or business rate rises.”
Notes to editor:
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