Shop Direct has hailed a “record” Christmas performance as its largest retail brand, Very, powered the group’s performance.

The fashion etailer said group revenue advanced 3.7% in the seven weeks to December 28, 2018. Sales at Very jumped 8.8% during the same period.

Shop Direct highlighted clothing and footwear as the “standout” product category during the period, as sales jumped 8% across the group and 15.7% at Very.

Seasonal items registered a 6.2% uptick year on year and jumped 14.1% at Very. Shop Direct’s toy proposition outperformed the wider market, clocking up a 20.4% spike in sales.

Shop Direct said it registered 107.3 million visits to its website during the crucial Christmas period, up 8% year on year. Total mobile sales advanced 12.7%, with 79% of online sales coming from mobile devices.

The business extended its Black Friday discounting frenzy, running deals from November 9 until November 27, 2018.

The longer period of promotions sparked an uplift in deliveries, from 6.5 million in Christmas 2017 to 6.8 million last year.

Shop Direct boss Henry Birch said the performance gave the business “reason for cautious optimism” despite the “challenging” retail backdrop.

Birch added: “Throughout our peak trading period we focused on delivering a great customer experience and curating the right deals for our customers and our business during our extended Black Friday event. We put more emphasis on December than ever before and saw encouraging growth in key departments like sportswear and toys.”