Consumers are set to defy the cold economic climate by stoking the fires of love this Valentine’s Day, according to online sales data from John Lewis. Sales of flowers, fragrances, gift foods, lingerie and other gifts bought through www.johnlewis.com flourished in 2010 and 2011 compared to 2008 – with lingerie particularly strong.
Overall sales of Valentine’s Day products were up 29.8% in 2010 and 31.7% in 2011, compared to 2008.
Lingerie saw the biggest increase in sales of all Valentine’s Day categories over the three years since 2008, up 42.3% in 2009, before climbing by 222.78% in 2010 and rocketing by a whopping 617% in 2011 – constituting just over a quarter of Valentine’s Day sales online. Fragrance too enjoyed the sweet smell of success, with online sales rising by 46.3% in 2009, 164.4% in 2010 and 203.2% in 2011.
Meanwhile, sales of Valentine’s Day gifts, such as candles, experience packages and jewellery, have increased steadily, rising 21.9% in 2009, 103.9% in 2010 and 110.7% in 2011 when compared to 2008. Gift foods, after seeing a peak in popularity in 2010, were still up almost 60% last year on 2008.
But it seems that we are still traditionalists at heart. Flowers remain the retailer’s best-selling gift, constituting around half of John Lewis’s overall online Valentine’s Day sales.
And while it remains to be seen if Valentine’s Day online sales will continue to flourish, for those looking for gift ideas, it seems that the old favourites are just as popular as ever.