Steve Rowe, the CEO of Marks & Spencer has speculated that Customers “may never shop the same way again” thanks to the COVID-19 outbreak.
Rowe explained that while some customer habits may return to normal once we emerge from the pandemic, many others will be permanently changed and will affect how people shop for food, clothing and other essential items. “Whilst some customer habits will return to normal, others have changed forever,” he said, adding that sales of formal-wear at M&S have taken a major decline since Boris Johnson imposed a national lockdown on 23 March.
“On conference calls I haven’t seen anyone in a suit yet,” said Rowe. “We are barely selling any suits and the number of ties I could probably count on one hand.”
Meanwhile, Rowe added that customers are also buying more frozen foods, with sales up by 75 per cent on the year in the UK, the BBC reports.
Marks & Spencer is one of the only major supermarkets not to have its own online delivery service. In September, the retailer will partner with Ocado in order to allow customers to shop its products online. The partnership will replace that which was previously between Waitrose and Ocado.