Drapers Record has posted two stories this week lamenting the effects of weather on trade. Well, we wouldn’t be British if we didn’t spend valuable time debating the pros and cons of good and bad weather.
John Lewis suffered from hot weather. It saw sales fall 4.3% for the week ending 10 May. In the same news alert H&M bemoans the cold weather in April and blames it for a 10% drop in sales.
One has to remember that last April, while not being particularly hot, was very sunny compared with this year. And although people prefer not to shop when it is hot a little bit of sunshine is always a reminder that summer is on the way. And of course last year we were all deceived as May was the beginning of a long wet summer and a good turnout on the high street.
Warm weather alerts people to the fact that they need new light weight clothes but hot weather makes shopping too much of a challenge and not the activity of choice for most people when the alternatives are a day on the beach or in the park.
It is interesting to note that the John Lewis stores that fared best in the hot weather were the inner city ones and not those on the edge of town. Also sales of fashion goods were up 5.6% even though footfall was down. So perhaps one could conclude that the dedicated fashionista will not be deterred by hot weather but the window shopper will.
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