Booths has reported its best ever December performance, with LFL sales up 3.5% and total sales up 5.6%.
Significant jump in pre-orders
The record Christmas sales reported by the regional supermarket chain were helped by the huge rise in pre-orders, which saw a 58% increase on last year. Chris Dee, chief operating officer at Booths, attributes this to the ease of online ordering and collection processes that were in place.
Trading up for Christmas
The success of Booths fits the overall pattern that is emerging from the release of Christmas trading figures, indicating that shoppers traded up over the festive period. Booths played to its strengths in order to capture this growth, emphasising its unique position in the market. Commenting on Booths' strategy, Chris Dee said "Booths customers rely on us to stock outstanding and good value food and drink. We refused to enter discounting battles over the Christmas period preferring to focus on stocking the exceptional produce out customers come to expect from Booths".
Focusing on differentiation
After reporting on a tough 2011/12 towards the end of last year, Booths pledged to increase the emphasis on its expertise in fresh food counters and specialist products, which form its key 'slow-lane' concept. Rather than compete directly on price, it planned to drive differentiation and continue to set itself apart from its supermarket competitors. Booths reported a 39% increase in smoked salmon sales, 23% increase in vintage champagne and 27% increase on champagne magnums which it believes demonstrates shoppers desire to buy higher quality products. It will look to push its premium image further in 2013, encouraging continued trading up from shoppers.
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