Despite attracting a million shoppers to the West End for the first traffic-free weekend of the season in Central London, an estimated 10% less was spent than last year.
The figures, which take into account takings on Oxford Street and Regent Street on the weekend of December 10-11, are thought to have tallied to £180m – down from £200m of revenue on the same day in 2010.
Richard Dickinson, Chief Executive of the New West End Company – which reported the figures – comments: "It's a real shoppers' market out there with stores offering discounts of up to 50%, and the tactic is working, with £20m going through the tills in the first three hours of Saturday's trading”.
The continued growth of online shopping may well be behind the sales decrease, or perhaps it’s simply that many more shoppers have made their purchases earlier than ever to beat the sales rush – a problem that’s not just confined to postal delays (which we reported here on Fieldworks Connections last week).
Alternatively, perhaps the mammoth discounts offered at these London stores resulted in greater footfall and a greater number of purchases, but a lower revenue total. No doubt once more concrete statistics have been revealed, more sophisticated analysis can be made to determine the true reasons behind the fall.