Boots witnessed a ‘record-breaking’ performance for beauty driving retail sales with a growth of 16 per cent in the three months to 28 February 2023.
The beauty category delivered a record January, and premium beauty saw its biggest ever sales week in December. Skincare reported three consecutive weeks of record sales in December driven by the ‘expert skincare’ category in which brands including No7, La Roche-Posay, CeraVe and Eucerin proved popular.
Boots beauty transformation strategy continued with 19 new beauty halls opened in Q2 and the 170th store to receive a beauty makeover opening at Westfield White City post-period end. Boots now stocks over 500 big name and cult beauty brands and exclusively sells the UK’s leading skincare brand, No7.
The business reported its eighth consecutive quarter of market share growth with gains across all categories, led by beauty – the stand-out performer of the quarter. Footfall, basket size and the number of Advantage Card customers all increased, as more people chose to shop at Boots. The Christmas period was particularly strong with retail sales in the five weeks to 31 December up 17.4% and outperforming the market.
Boots further expanded its value offering in the quarter, announcing its biggest ever savings as part of its continued focus on the affordability of life’s essentials. This included the addition of 60 new products to the Boots Everyday label as well as the extension of its Price Advantage scheme, which has to date resulted in £30 million of customer savings and now includes discounts on over 800 products every month.
Customers continue to return to stores – with footfall increasing 16% in the quarter, and they are also buying more – with the number of items sold up versus the prior year. At the same time, boots.com continued to perform well. Digital sales increased by 17%, now representing over 15% of retail sales. The Boots App saw growth of 65% over the period year on year, now representing over 25% of digital sales.
Sebastian James, Managing Director of Boots UK & ROI, commented: “More people are choosing to shop with Boots, largely thanks to our focus on value and our market leading beauty offer. This is reflected in our strong retail sales performance and our continuing market share growth, particularly in terms of Christmas trading. We also delivered an increase in pharmacy sales, despite the challenging sector backdrop. I would like to thank our wonderful team members for their continued hard work and focus on delivering for our customers.”