Scottish retail sales fall despite rising footfall

Total Scottish retail sales fell 1.8% in July 2014 compared to July 2013 despite a 4.4% rise in footfall, according to figures from the Scottish Retail Consortium (SRC).

The monthly statistics also reveal that like-for-like sales dropped 3.7% on July 2013.

However, the SRC said that total sales increased by 0.1% in July once adjusted for deflation.

Footfall in Scotland rose by 4.4% in July 2014, the highest regional figure in the UK thanks to the Commonwealth Games in Glasgow.

The sales figures show:

  • total food sales dropped 2.8% on July 2013, the biggest fall since March 2014
  • total food sales fell 2% over the last 3 months
  • total non-food sales dropped 1% in July 2014 year-on-year.

David Lonsdale, director of the SRC, said:

"Despite a healthy rise in footfall witnessed on Scotland's high streets and shopping centres in July, it didn't translate into a commensurate increase in the actual value of retail sales. The total value of sales grew by a meagre 0.1% in real terms, once shop price deflation is taken into account.

"Going forward, retailers will be buoyed by further recent rises in employment and falling unemployment in Scotland, albeit forecasts for future wage growth over the short term remain tentative at best. Government can assist with policies which put money into people's pockets, keep down the cost of doing business, and make it easier for retailers to invest and expand their premises."