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Signet Sees Surge in Holiday E-Commerce Sales

Jan 14, 2021 9:43 AM   By Rapaport News
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Signet Jewelers reported a positive holiday season as soaring online sales helped compensate for the pandemic’s adverse impact on store traffic.

Revenue was flat year on year at $1.8 billion for the nine weeks ending January 2, while same-store sales jumped 5.6%, the retailer reported Thursday in a preliminary trading update. E-commerce sales surged 61%, offsetting a 4.1% drop in same-store sales at brick-and-mortar locations.

“Despite considerable macro[economic] hurdles, the Signet team delivered strong holiday performance — an achievement that demonstrates the power of our multiyear Path to Brilliance transformation strategy and the agility, innovation, and determination of our people,” said CEO Virginia Drosos.

Drosos attributed the result to better online selling capabilities, marketing, and differentiation between store banners, as well as improvements to merchandising. All of these lifted conversion rates, attracted new customers and increased market share, she added.

For instance, the company introduced a service allowing customers to buy online and pick up in a store, or ship items from a store. Signet also sharpened its virtual selling options, customer care and website navigation, it noted. E-commerce fulfillment capacity was five times that of last holiday, with the company able to deliver more than 98% of North America customer orders on time during the 2020 season.

The online gains coincided with a slimming of Signet’s physical retail network. The company operated 2,866 stores as of January 2 after completing 355 of the 380 store closures it had planned for the current fiscal year, which runs until the end of this month.

The figures were still weaker than during the third fiscal quarter ending October 31, 2020, when sales rose 9.5% year on year due to early holiday shopping. Signet forecast revenue of $2.1 billion to $2.12 billion for the fourth fiscal quarter — down from $2.15 billion from a year earlier — and predicted same-store sales would advance 4% to 5%.

Image: A Kay Jewelers store. (Shutterstock)
Tags: holiday, holiday season, North America, Rapaport News, retail, Signet, Signet Jewelers, Virginia Drosos
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