John Lewis generated another record week as sales broke through the £160m barrier for the first time ever.
In the week to December 21 the department store retailer generated sales of £164.4m, up 4.2% year on year, while online sales surged 31% against last year.
And more is set to come today and tomorrow, the retailer said, as shoppers make their last-minute shopping trips before Christmas Day.
John Lewis said trading has been different this year after an early peak at the beginning of the month flattened out before the final week’s surge, up 9.7% on the previous week.
John Lewis said its fashion, home and home technology categories all recorded record weeks.
The retailer said home technology sales jumped 5.6% against last year, driven by iPad sales, as it sold one device every ten seconds. John Lewis said the iPad Air has been the most sought after gift.
Fashion sales jumped 3.3% against last year led by childrenswear and toys. Beauty gift sets were popular and lingerie sales also increased, John Lewis said.
Home sales grew 4.4% year on year as shoppers bought board games and jigsaw puzzles. Gift food sales were also “strong” as customers bought limoncello, panettone and stollen. John Lewis added that it has sold 2.3 million chocolate coins this Christmas to make it the retailer’s bestselling gift food product of the year.
John Lewis buying director Paula Nickolds said: “It’s clear that much of Britain has yet again taken shopping for Christmas right up to the wire. Buoyed by this week’s record trading, all of our channels are braced for the final three shopping days before Christmas.
“Final Click & Collect orders for pre-Christmas collection will be taken at 7pm on Monday – an extension of one day – before our online focus shifts to Clearance, which starts at 5pm on Christmas Eve on johnlewis.com and in our shops from early in the morning on the 27th December.”