Online retailer The Very Group has reported impressive results for its festive period, with overall group revenue increasing by 15.3% compared to the previous year. This marked a significant milestone as the company exceeded £500 million in revenue for the first time during this period. The star brand within The Very Group, Very.co.uk, experienced a particularly strong performance, with retail sales rising by 18.1%. This resulted in the best-ever Christmas trading period for Very.co.uk. The company also witnessed strong trading throughout 2020.

The home and electrical categories stood out as the top performers for The Very Group, with increases of 46.2% and 44.8% respectively. In addition, the company gained over 500,000 new Very customers, representing a 25.5% year-on-year increase. Sales through the Very mobile app also saw significant growth, with a 33% increase.

The Black Friday promotional period from 6 November to 2 December proved to be a major success for Very, with retail sales increasing by 25.8% and web traffic soaring by 55%. This made it the most successful Black Friday period for the company.

Although fashion did not perform as strongly as other categories, it still experienced growth. Very’s fashion and sports category sales rose by 4.1%, driven by the popularity of women’s sportswear (+37.6%), men’s sportswear (+22.2%), and kids’ sportswear (+33.1%). There was also a 4% growth in the company’s “other” categories, fueled by the pandemic’s focus on wellbeing and self-care. Fragrance and beauty (+12.2%) and cycling (+4.7%) were particularly successful within these categories.

Throughout the festive season, The Very Group made extensive use of new technology. The AI-based Very Assistant chatbot provided personalized assistance to 150,000 customers per week. Additionally, AI was utilized to offer tailored product recommendations based on customers’ shopping baskets. The Very app introduced targeted promotions, allowing customers to access exclusive deals through push notifications. On Black Friday, relevant promotions were displayed on every product page, enhancing customer experience.

CEO Henry Birch attributed the record-breaking performance to the early start of Christmas shopping at Very and the success of the company’s new fulfilment centre. During the peak period, the fulfilment centre processed 3.9 million orders. Birch expressed optimism for the future, emphasizing that The Very Group’s online, multi-category business model with flexible payment options will enable the company to thrive in 2021 despite economic uncertainty.

Useful links:
1. Very.co.uk
2. The Very Group