Sainsbury’s online grocery sales up 29% for Q1

J Sainsbury has issued the results for Quarter 1 covering the 16 weeks to 26 June 2021, which show that sales are ahead of expectations, with a significant rise in online grocery sales.

The results:
• Q1 like-for-like sales up 1.6% (excl. fuel)
• Total retail sales up 1.6% (excl. fuel), two-year growth 10.3%
• Grocery sales up 0.8%, two-year growth 11.3%
• Groceries Online sales up 29%, two-year growth 142%
• Reinvesting benefits of stronger sales growth and now expect underlying profit before tax of at least £660m

The company stated, 'We have made good progress throughout the quarter, building on last year’s strong momentum and growing Grocery sales year-on-year despite exceptionally tough comparatives.

'As part of our plan to put food back at the heart of Sainsbury’s, we have given customers better value groceries through Sainsbury’s Quality, Aldi Price Match and have increased our speed of innovation. We are on track to launch 1,900 lines this year, introducing 277 new lines in the quarter.

'We are actively encouraging customers to choose food that is better for them and better for the planet through our Helping Everyone Eat Better campaign. We launched our second Nectar ‘Great Big Fruit and Veg Challenge’, which rewards customers for buying more fruit and vegetables.

'We have also introduced a new target for over 83 per cent of our food sales to be healthy or better for you by 2025. We are proud to be working with the government on this as the Principal Supermarket Partner for COP26 in Glasgow in November.

'As restrictions continue to ease, customers are beginning to return to more normal shopping patterns, with online demand reducing gradually from peak levels and transaction numbers increasing in stores.

'However, online remains very popular, accounting for 18 per cent of our Grocery sales this quarter against eight per cent in the first quarter of 2019/20. We are encouraged by the number of customers who shopped online with Sainsbury’s for the first time during the pandemic who have become loyal customers, shopping online and instore. We continue to gain online market share from our competition.

Simon Roberts, Chief Executive, said, “We continue to make good progress against our plan to put food back at the heart of Sainsbury’s and have good momentum within the business.

'Our colleagues are doing a brilliant job of giving great customer service and continuing to adapt as restrictions ease and shopping habits change. Over the coming months we expect to see customer shopping patterns normalise further and we are well set up to serve them however they want to shop.'

Roberts continued, “We are focused on offering our customers even better value and regularly creating new and exciting products for them to try. From today we are reducing prices by £50 million on everyday products from strawberries and cherries to bacon and potatoes, helping customers make the most of this summer.

'I’m delighted that customers are responding to the changes we are making and that we are growing our market share.'

Roberts closed, “Our recent launch of Helping Everyone Eat Better will help customers find great tasting food that is good for them and also good for the planet, an important step on our journey to reduce our impact on the environment”.