Have you ever wondered who the wealthiest retail owners in the UK are? Based on sales in 2016, it comes as no surprise that four of the top five ranking retailers are major supermarkets, according to a list compiled by Retail Economics. Way out in front, Tesco more than doubled the sales of its nearest rival Sainsbury's.
Read on to find out the top five wealthiest retailers in the UK based on 2016 sales figures:
With total sales of £54.4 billion in 2016, Tesco was the UK's top-performer. Being the UK's largest retailer has a lot to do with this: with more than 6,000 outlets, it makes the most of its network of stores as click-and-collect locations, with the physical stores supporting the online element of its trading.
Recognising the importance of the Internet for efficient trading, Tesco achieves a commercial advantage through implementing IT innovations to improve the shopping experience for customers and the day-to-day life of staff.
Sainsbury’s has managed to retain its market share - and with total sales of £23.5 billion in 2016, it remains ahead of many of its competitors. Sainsbury's market share hit 16.6% - the highest in almost ten years. Analysts say sales were boosted by the chain's own-label products, particularly its Taste the Difference and Basics ranges, which experienced strong growth.
Sainsbury's chief executive Justin King says business is booming because they "do the basics well" and employ a "simple approach" to running a supermarket.
Asda's total sales were £23.3 billion and analysts said it appeared to be more focused on its long-term strategy rather than immediate remedies, investing in lower prices to attract more customers.
However, the past few years have seen plenty of ups and downs for the supermarket brand, with its sales performance in 2015 being its worst in two decades. It made a major recovery in 2016.
With sales for the year totalling £16.1 billion, Morrisons became the FTSE 100’s highest climber at the end of 2016. The closure of almost 5% of its total stores helped to boost profits, as loss-making outlets were axed. Morrison's buoyant performance was attributed to price cuts, including the reduction in price of around 1,000 products by an average of 18%, followed by a second round of price-cuts just one month later, when the price of almost 160 more products was reduced by an average of 12%.
5. John Lewis
The only non-supermarket retailer in the top five, John Lewis' total sales were £11 billion for 2016. The department store chain attributed its success to superior quality goods and services and improved accessibility to stores. In particular, the homeware division has grown. The retailer differs from many of its contemporaries in that the John Lewis Partnership is at the helm. This means that all of John Lewis' 76,500 permanent staff are partners - ultimately, they own the 35 department stores and 272 Waitrose outlets. Everyone from chairman Charlie Mayfield to the shelf-stackers receives the same percentage pay-out.
Rising up the retail ranks can seem a daunting challenge for new and smaller businesses. However, if you're a newcomer to the retail world, some of the more basic considerations might just help your business to prosper. The physical appearance of your premises will certainly make a difference to the appeal of your store and a considered approach to your merchandising technique will make for a more practical and efficient shopping experience.
Pay attention to your fittings, as they can attract and retain customers if they are visually appealing. Put yourself in your customers' shoes and try to imagine how they see your store. An important part of the business's success is ensuring your store looks good - so make sure you have only the best quality shop fittings that display your products most effectively.
As a leading UK supplier of shopfittings and display equipment, KAS Shopfittings stocks a large range of products at low prices and with fast delivery. We can help get your business on the road to success.