2020 has been a strange year for us all, but that has not stopped the commercial wheels from turning. Whether making orders online products from home or hitting the streets armed with a face mask and hand sanitizer, the UK public have continued to spend out on consumer goods even despite the COVID-19 pandemic.
As businesses grapple with reduced footfall and a difficult trading environment, it makes sense that they would want to capitalise on any opportunities that they can. With that in mind, here’s a rundown of 2020’s bestselling products and how you can get a slice of the action.
Dressed to the nines
According to data compiled by Royal Mail, nearly half of UK adults have received more parcels during the coronavirus lockdown. Included amongst these deliveries have been a considerable number of fashion packages with a huge 64% of UK adults having received a delivery to update their wardrobe since 23rd March 2020.
Taking a deeper dive into this category, the most popular products have included coats in preparation for the winter, along with more stylish business casual clothes for those office Zoom calls taken from the comfort of your own home. It seems that even when we can’t get out and about, Brits want to look good.
House (and garden) proud products
Next up on the list are home improvement and gardening products, which have seen a rise in popularity as the public get around to all of those tasks they couldn’t do whilst at work. Whether it’s time spent on furlough or simply more freedom to do as they please, some 20% of British adults have received a parcel containing plants and flowers during lockdown, with 20% also having ordered paint to give their home a new lease of life.
A further 14% are said to have ordered compost products, whilst the less active among us will at least have been comfortable, with 13% having spent out on bestselling home bedding products.
A nation of pet lovers
Another way in which people have been taking advantage of their new homebody status is by taking on responsibility for a furry friend. The UK truly is a nation of pet lovers, and so it’s no surprise that the UK pet food and veterinary markets were worth a combined £5.3 billion in 2019.
During lockdown, 11% of UK adults are reported to have taken a delivery of pet food and that doesn’t even account for those who purchase theirs from a physical shop. With people spending more time at home, pet ownership has seen a real uptick and so there’s no surprise that pet products have made their way into the list of bestsellers.
Help to get healthy products
An almost universal side effect of the COVID-19 pandemic has been a renewed global interest in health products and healthy living in general. As the lockdown restrictions fell upon the UK, reporting body Ipsos Mori found that at least 25% of Brits had upped their activity levels, with 52% finding outdoor exercise beneficial to their general happiness levels and 31% enjoying indoor workouts.
This spread shows the huge breadth of the health and fitness industry, and there are undoubtedly a great many opportunities that retailers can take advantage of to secure more sales as the country gets healthy. With the UK government now following the mantra of “stay fit to fight the virus”, it seems unlikely that the current focus on fitness is just a fad.
How to make the most of shopping trends
Whether this year’s figures could use improvement or if you just want to outperform last year’s success, taking a strategic approach to retail trends could help your business to boost its sales And if you have an in-store payment solution, make sure you have enough card machine paper for your customers.
For one thing, customers value a personalised service over any generic commercial offering and so stocking and selling the most popular products could help you to sell them what they want. In a similar vein, you can use promotions to your advantage by planning discounts on various items just as they become popular. It sounds like you might need some form of foresight, but it’s actually much easier than you might think. This is how retailers are able to maximise their profits by selling ‘back to school’ equipment and clothing in August, and fitness equipment in January as people try to stay true to their New Year’s resolutions.
Another thing to consider is whether your systems and operations are out of date or out of step with your retail business. When you’re trying to grasp at a market share for your business, it’s all too easy to forget that it isn’t just the products that customers care about. It’s crucial to have effective payment solutions and a fully working website, if not tidy physical retail premises. It’s never too late to invest in your business infrastructure, and with easy and convenient card readers or an online eCommerce payment gateway from a renowned provided like UTP Group, you could be up and running taking payments quicker than you can say lockdown.
Making the most of it
Whichever way you choose to attract customers, the COVID-19 pandemic has undoubtedly changed the game when it comes to retail sales both online and offline. Times are tough, and to entice paying clients it’s necessary to engage with them whether actively through a bespoke service, or passively by studying retail trends and making it easy for them to get their hands on bestselling products. Retailers are facing a difficult trading environment at the moment, but that doesn’t mean they can’t make the most of the latest crazes and turn a profit by selling them.