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Laura Ashley enjoys rise in online sales

08 September 2014 - 10:32 by Sarah Collinson

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Over the first half of 2014, fashion and homeware chain, Laura Ashley, has enjoyed a 6.1 per cent rise in sales made online, according to Internet Retailing.

In the six months to July, it made £22.5 million through its e-commerce site, which is a 1.3 million increase compared with the same period in 2013.

Profits rose even more substantially, up by 14.9 per cent, as the firm focuses on establishing itself as a multichannel player that can thrive across a range of retail platforms.

Laura Ashley also found its overseas business growing, with analysts anticipating that it will enjoy an even more prosperous second half of the year here in the UK.

Spokesperson, Tan Sri Dr Khoo Kay Peng, highlighted the impressive growth in its sales made by safe shopping online as being an especially positive aspect of the business so far this year.

In addition, he said that a combination of loyal customers and desirable, well made products, was helping to strengthen the brand and further stimulate its growth.

Laura Ashley may be succeeding in the online sphere, but it also has a strong high street presence, with over 200 stores in the UK alone.

This is a sure sign that, with a well managed multichannel approach, it is possible for retailers to remain a strong bricks and mortar presence while also ensuring that they are appealing to consumers who prefer shopping online.

In the past year, one other success story has been the resurrection of HMV, which came close to the brink of collapse in 2013. It is now hoping to overtake Amazon as the UK’s biggest seller of CDs, with representatives insisting that even in a digital age, the majority of people buy their music on a physical format.