Non-food stores posted a 3.7 percent gain in 2021, GfK reported Thursday. Food and near-food sales, on the other hand, were down 1.0 percent. This was also due to strong comparative figures.
In the previous year, 2020, retail sales - despite Corona and the spring store closures - had grown 7.8 percent, the best performance in several decades, according to GfK. Back then, grocery stores had boomed thanks to hoarding purchases, with food and near-food sales shooting up 10.9 percent.
In terms of cumulative growth at the end of 2021, the do-it-yourself sector was in the lead. The leisure segment also performed extremely well: fitness equipment, everything to do with cycling, winter sports supplies, and e-bikes would have continued to be in vogue in 2021. Furthermore, demand in most toy sub-segments increased significantly, with demand for toys in the high-priced segment also rising at Christmas.
Increase according to FSO higher
GfK's findings thus differ from those of the Swiss Federal Statistical Office (SFSO). On Tuesday, the latter had communicated a nominal sales increase of 4.2 percent on the basis of provisional figures for the retail trade. (Werbewoche.ch reported). In real terms, i.e. excluding inflation, the figure was 4.7 percent. All sectors that had suffered losses in 2020 due in part to the coronal pandemic had largely made up for them, the FSO said.
The difference in the data can be explained by the type of survey. The retail trade turnover statistics of the FSO are based on a random sample of around 3,000 companies. It is collected on a monthly basis, with small businesses being surveyed on a quarterly basis for monthly sales figures.
At GFK, the figures are based on actual sales figures that the service provider receives from over 40 major Swiss retailers. According to the data, these account for around 40 to 50 percent of total sales in the industry. Specialty retailers are not included here. (SDA)