Wednesday, May 18th, 2011
Online retailing may be growing rapidly in Australia, but a member of Gift & Homewares Australia (GHA) has shown there is still a place for traditional bricks and mortar retailers in the gift industry, posting record sales over Mother’s Day.

Wild Cards & Gifts recorded an unprecedented 10.4% increase in sales on last year for the week leading up to Mother’s Day, despite having no online shopping platform.

The Melbourne-based franchise’s sales nationwide also eclipsed all previous records for Father’s Day and Valentine’s Day, with the largest increases seen in Victoria with 26% and South Australia with 21%.

Franchisor Lawrence Boyle said the sales results, generated solely through shopping centre stores, proved many gift buyers still preferred the personal touch of bricks and mortar retailers.

“To borrow a phrase from Monty Python: ‘we’re not dead yet’,” said Mr Boyle.

“We hear so much about the rise of online retailing that we tend to forget the other 93% of sales that are occurring in traditional retail stores. Particularly in the case of Mother’s Day, customers like to feel and touch gifts in a store rather than waiting for them to arrive in the mail.”

Mr Boyle said the record Mother’s Day sales, which followed year-on-year sales increases for the first four months of 2011, could be attributed to a lack of interest rate rises and improved product offerings from suppliers.

Wild Cards & Gifts also hosted its first 8-page online information catalogue to drive customers to its 43 stores across Australia.

“We’re happy to use the web to encourage customers to visit our stores, but we are holding off on introducing an online shopping platform until we find a model that provides increased income to all franchisees,” said Mr Boyle.

Australia’s largest group of franchised card and gift retailers and a proud member of GHA, Wild Cards & Gifts is planning to open five more shopping centre-based retail stores in the next 12 months with the aim of achieving $40 million in total retail sales in the coming year.

GHA’s Chief Executive Officer, David Leek said he was delighted to see members, such as Wild Cards & Gifts, enjoying strong sales via traditional retail outlets.

“There’s no denying online transactions are becoming increasingly important in our industry – and we are focusing on this growth area with our web-based purchasing platform Supplier Haven – but members continue to prove there is a place for the time-honoured stores and shop fronts in our future retail landscape,” said Mr Leek.

Contact Profile

Gift & Homewares Australia (GHA)

Gift & Homewares Australia (GHA) is the leading industry body representing the gift and homewares industry in Australia with origins dating back to 1977. Based in Homebush, Sydney, the ‘not-for-profit’ organisation is dedicated to serving its membership base through the provision of discounted industry services, commercial and political lobbying and two annual Home & Giving exhibitions held in Sydney and Melbourne.

Further information: Contact GHA on 1300 441 384 or email [email protected]
Paul Fahy
P: 02 9368 7277


Retail, Retailing, Gifts, Homewares, Online, GHA, Mother's Day, Sales



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