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UK Retailers embrace multifaceted strategy to boost sales, says study

By Don-Alvin Adegeest


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High Street Credits: Daniel Frese

New research from American Express has revealved that UK retailers are embracing a multifaceted approach to drive sales growth this year, with a strategic focus on both physical expansion and digital enhancement.

Surveying 500 senior decision-makers across the retail and hospitality sectors, Amex's study delves into the challenges, investment priorities, and customer engagement strategies of businesses of varying sizes.

The findings underscore a notable emphasis on bolstering online capabilities, with nearly a third of surveyed retailers (32 percent) intending to either revamp existing e-commerce platforms or launch new ones within the next year. Interestingly, despite the digital shift, plans for brick-and-mortar expansion remain robust, with nearly a third (29 percent) of respondents eyeing new store openings in 2024. Among large retailers specifically, over half (53 percent) are gearing up for new premises this year.

Overall, the research paints an optimistic outlook for the retail sector, with 80 percent of respondents expressing confidence in their ability to attract and retain customers. Business development and marketing emerge as critical investment areas, with over a third (35 percent) of retailers prioritizing these avenues to foster customer connections. Notably, a substantial proportion are looking to experiment with new marketing channels and intensify social media engagement to tap into evolving consumer trends and broaden their reach.

Dan Edelman, General Manager, UK Merchant Services at American Express, said: “Our research reveals an optimism among UK retailers, with an appetite to invest to tackle the ongoing challenge of attracting and retaining customers. This comes with a recognition that, in a competitive landscape, retailers need to utilise all the channels available to them to build connections. It’s encouraging to see that a bricks and mortar presence remains key, in tandem with driving online growth, to create those customer experiences that encourage spend and lasting loyalty.”

American Express
High street