Cardies report year-on-year growth for Easter cards
Mild weather and a later Easter this year have helped push up sales for card and gift retailers this year with demand exceeding supply in many case for the third spring season event.
Strong window displays and graphics from specialist multiples such as Paperchase, Scribbler, Clintons and Card Factory served to prompt consumers to stock on their Easter cards while indies were also able to make the most of the ‘free to download’ Easter PoS from the GCA website (created by UK Greetings) to promote the event.
“Easter this year has caught a few retailers out, who underestimated the demand for Easter cards,” commented South West sales agent Rosie Trow. “This is the one seas that favours the independent card and gift shop as the more mature purchasers will gravitate there first to look for their cards rather than when they are at the supermarket. In addition, we now have a more established ‘family’ send of people wanting to keep it touch. There is still more potential out there.”
Pete Whiteman co-owner of DzoDzo, Woodbridge told PG Buzz that his sales of Easter cards are up around 8% on last year. “It is the one season that’s getting bigger and more important every year. We have introduced many smaller publishers to enhance the range from the larger companies to provide us with something sets us apart from the crowd.”
Further north in Yorkshire and Rachael Barnes, co-owner of Dragonfly Cards and Gifts in Knaresborough echoed these views. “Easter is now bigger for us than Father’s Day. The trend in recent years for Easter decorations has helped, as we now sell as many Easter gifts as we do cards. We had an Easter tree decorated in the window of the shop and that drew people in.”
Another indie, in Stamford, Lincolnshire attributes the lighter nights and good weather as having helped to increase Easter trade. Co-owner of Love It, Amanda Oscroft said: “our Easter card sales are up on last year”, with sales buoyed by an increase in customers buying cards generally at the moment, with “70th birthday cards and gifts in especially high demand for the 1940s post war baby boomers.”
Retail sales were strong across the board over the Easter break with in-store sales up by 14% year-on-year on Good Friday and Saturday, according to a report from Barclaycard.
Picture at top: PG’s Warren Lomax in Paperchase over Easter.