Essential reading for retailers and suppliers in the home improvement market

Homebase tops best single day of trading, as UK heatwave peaks

Published: 25 July 2019 - Fiona Garcia
Homebase has recorded sales of £1.5million for the past three days of trading, with air con units and evaporative coolers accounting for more than half of the figure
Homebase has recorded sales of £1.5million for the past three days of trading, with air con units and evaporative coolers accounting for more than half of the figure

As Britain continues to sizzle in soaring temperatures, major retailers report a surge in sales of cooling products and outdoor lines, with Homebase raking in £690,000 yesterday alone.

The impressive figure beat Homebase’s best single day last year, when £645,000 went through the tills.

Week-to-date sales have reached £1.5million in just three days of trading – with sales of air con and evaporative coolers accounting for more than half of that amount, and the rest in sales of fans.

“To put that into context,” a spokesperson for the company told DIY Week, “our best week so far this season saw us make £742, 000 over seven days of trading! Our week-to-date sales are up 264% vs the same period last year.”

John Lewis saw a 400% spike in sales of lawnmowers this past week, as consumers got their gardens ready for the heatwave
John Lewis saw a 400% spike in sales of lawnmowers this past week, as consumers got their gardens ready for the heatwave

Department store chain, John Lewis & Partners has also seen sales soar in rising temperatures. The retailer reported an incredible 400% jump in lawnmowers, as customers prepared for this week’s heatwave and buying director Laurence Mitchell said the retailer was “well set up for this week with good availability of fans”.

John Lewis recorded a 120% uplift in sales of fans for the week to date, with the retailer’s line of handheld fan proving to be one of its best-selling items, as consumers struggle to stay cool on public transport in the heatwave.

Argos also got in on the action, recording its best-ever day for cooling yesterday, selling 95,000 fans and cooling products. Its best seller yesterday was its being the 12-inch desk fan, of which it sold 19,500 units.

Meanwhile, watering products, including hoses, sprinklers and watering cans are up 59% at John Lewis, whilst sales of paddling pools have increased 42% this week, with strong demand for baby pools with shades which are up 96%.

Consumers are clearly making the most of their outdoor spaces, despite the heat, with sales of John Lewis barbecues, deckchairs and loungers up 33%, and reusable ice cubes up 40%.

Argos has seen a surge in demand for ice cream makers, which are up 62% year on year. And, with schools breaking up for summer this week, slush puppie machines have also proved a winner, with sales up 163% week on week, whilst outdoor toys and paddling pools have increased 75% and 400% respectively week on week

Temperature balancing bedding is also proving a hit this past week, with sales up 76% at John Lewis and linen bedding jumping 82%, as customers are looking for ways to keep their bedrooms cooler in the heat.

John Lewis buyer of decorative bed linen, Zoe Stewart said: “Breathable fibres such as linen, up 82% year on year, are proving popular with John Lewis & Partners customers in the summer months, as linen is naturally temperature regulating.”

With the highest temperatures recorded in the south of the country, Homebase has seen a particular uplift in the region, with the south and south east accounting for more than £1million of sales over the past three days and the home improvement retailer’s distribution team having had to “work tirelessly to put on extra deliveries today to replenish stocks, concentrated on these regions”, said a spokesperson.

Whilst Homebase said it believes yesterday was the peak day, with customers getting ready for the hottest day of the year today, it believes the upward trend will continue and is anticipating sales of £500,000 today, with hopes of besting its best week last year, which pulled in £2.3million.  

As temperatures soar, John Lewis has seen demand for temperature balancing and linen bedding, with sales jumping 76% and 82% respectively
As temperatures soar, John Lewis has seen demand for temperature balancing and linen bedding, with sales jumping 76% and 82% respectively

 

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