David Jones on exponential rise of luxury goods – and what it expects on Boxing Day

Sales of luxury and designer goods has catapulted David Jones sales into double-digit growth territory post-lockdown and the department store retailer expects sales trends on Boxing Day to follow suit.

David Jones general manager of womenswear, footwear and accessories, Bridget Veals, said the surge in sales of luxury goods was a trend the department store was experiencing on both sides of the Tasman as consumers shifted from splashing out on experiences to durables as borders remained closed.

“With people not travelling, certainly they have spent money on luxury leather goods, designer shoes and fine jewellery, those have been major categories where we have seen phenomenal sales,” Veals told the Herald.

In response to the surge in designer sales, David Jones has introduced new luxury brands Longines, Qeelin and Pomellato to its stores, along with smaller emerging brands Harris Tapper and Wynn Hamlyn, and introduced footwear by Valentino, Alexander McQueen and Jimmy Choo.

Sales of Yves Saint Laurent, Chloe, Alexander McQueen products had experienced a significant uplift in recent months and David Jones was struggling to keep the brands in stock, Veals said.

David Jones was confident that strong sales among luxury brands would continue even once the borders reopened, she said.

“Kiwis are investing in pieces and I think they’re treating themselves and loved ones.”

Sales of luxury goods began noticeably taking off in September, with homewares, children’s wear and women’s fashion also experiencing “an incredible year”, Veals said.

David Jones still does not have a local online website – perhaps a missed opportunity during lockdown and in recent months when e-commerce orders elsewhere have swelled.

Veals said David Jones had since made launching a local online store a priority, however, it could not confirm when this would go live.

Tills will be ringing

David Jones expects Boxing Day this year to be even bigger than previous year, with luxury and designer goods hot picks by consumers.

Boxing Day is traditionally its biggest shopping day of the year.

“What we see on Boxing Day is a big push in electrical goods, and more so, into fashion. We get an uplift [in sales] on everything, and designer goes on sale earlier than Boxing Day, which is traditional around the world from what they call designer clearance.

“People are spending big and they have been spending big online, so we’ll certainly see that shift. This Boxing Day will be our biggest one ever online, we predict.”

David Jones prepares for its Boxing Day sales 15 months in advance, and is already stuck into planning for next Christmas and Boxing Day.

Like most retailers, the goods that are discounted on Boxing Day are end of season fashion pieces and stock that did not sell-out in the lead up to Christmas. The sales event is used as a way of clearing out old stock to make room for new product.

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