The main reason for the decline in home shopping is the fact that many home shopping retailers are seeing a shift in where consumer orders take place – most players’ sales are in fact now via internet retailing. For example, taking one of the key operators within the channel, QVC, more than four fifths of the company’s sales in 2018 were internet retailing.
Together with the greater focus of home shopping operators on sales generated through the internet, the target group is also expected to shift. Before, the main target group was people aged 60+, whereas now younger consumers are discovering the websites of home shopping companies and are enjoying the wide variety of product offerings.
Some product categories have failed to gain a strong sales presence via home shopping, and are unlikely to ever do so, now that this channel appears to be in long-term decline. Sales of home care and home improvement and gardening products are notably hindered by the low prices and the bulky or heavy nature of many products, which makes them unattractive to home shopping players because of high delivery, distribution and storage costs.
“Others” is dominant in home shopping in terms of value sales, with key product offerings being food and drink, in which specialists, such as high-quality butchers and wine merchants, tend to dominate. Apparel and footwear and beauty and personal care are also significant in “others” but are seeing a sharp decline due to a shift towards internet retailing.
Whilst one of the key operators within home shopping remains Next, this company is also seeing its sales decline. The company notably began to focus more on its mid-season New-In brochures, with these being more compact in comparison with its larger seasonal catalogues.
Players such as N Brown Group continue to operate via traditional home shopping channels, including catalogues, with this brand stating that catalogues tend to appeal more to many of its long-term, loyal and often elderly consumers. However, N Brown Group is increasingly viewing catalogues more as a marketing tool, with internet retailing accounting for most of its sales, especially mobile internet retailing.
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