The annual John Lewis & Partners Retail Report has been released today, shedding light on what the nation bought over the last 12 months and why. We take a look...
JOMO replaces FOMO
The headline findings show that British consumers are hunkering down and investing in their homes and wellbeing, streamlining their possessions and opting for nights in with friends and family – in short, JOMO (joy of missing out) has replaced FOMO (fear of missing out). This is reflected in the sales of products such as linen bedding, which has seen an increase in sales of 187%, house plants (a 43% increase in sales) and home cinema experiences, plus the rise in casserole dishes and informal dining wares. The report also reveals the return of the home bar, with drinks trolleys and spirit measures seeing the biggest increase in sales. Conversely, cocktail shakers saw a decrease in popularity, pointing to the fact that artisan tonics and gins have been dominating the home bar.
Continuing the glamorous theme, as customers spent more time in their homes, they are investing in dramatic embellishments with nearly one third of customers investing in brass, copper velvet or marble. To meet demand, John Lewis & Partners launched an entire collection of velvet soft furnishings.
War on plastic
In 2019, the year that the Government announced a forthcoming ban on plastic straws, cotton buds and drinks stirrers, the overriding theme was (unsurprisingly) the war on disposable plastic, with sales of reusable straws increasing by a whopping 1573%, water bottles increasing by 15% and portable cutlery by 176%.
It was also the year we decluttered, having perhaps been influenced by Marie Kondo’s popular Netflix series. Customers invested in storage and products to help us get more organised; storage boxes saw an increase of 47%, while baskets rose by 24%.
What we left behind in 2019
- Drones - John Lewis & partners dropped drones from its lines following the disruption in UK airports in December 2018.
- Landlines - No surprise that sales went down 20% this year, as customers are relying solely on their smartphones to stay in touch.
- Mantel clocks - Down 30% as customers ask their voice activated speaker for the time instead.
- Fish Kettles - Dropped from John Lewis & partners’ lines as formal dinner parties are fast falling from favour.
The next big thing
And what does 2020 hold in store? John Lewis & Partners predicts that our increasingly busy lifestyles will see us investing in pressure cookers, home appliances that eliminates the boring bits from everyday life (such as washing machines that auto-dose and can be set remotely, robot vacuum cleaners, or printers which order themselves more ink when running low) and further integration of ‘smart home’ tech in our spaces. Meanwhile, the focus on wellbeing will grow ever stronger – healing crystals are being touted as the next big trend to go mainstream. You heard it here first.