Briscoe Group, which operates the Briscoes, Rebel Sports, and Living & Giving stores in New Zealand, may introduce a customer loyalty programme this year to stoke growth in online sales.
The retailer flagged at its 2012 annual meeting that it was trialling a new customer loyalty programme. Managing director Rod Duke today said a loyalty programme to encourage people to use its website was one of the options he was exploring this year.
Such programmes typically reward members with discounts, spending points, special offers, gifts and prizes, and are used by retailers such as Farmers, a rival of Briscoe for manchester and homewares.
The Living & Giving chain, which Briscoe bought in 2006, was part of Loyalty New Zealand's Fly Buy programme from 2002 to 2003.
Online sales are continuing to comprise a bigger portion of Briscoe's overall sales, finishing 50 percent up on the previous year.
But Duke, the listed company's majority shareholder, has consistently refused to say exactly what percentage online sales now constitute or the dollar amount due to "commercial sensitivity."
Duke said there was considerable potential for on-going growth in online sales and he was continuing to look at ways to deliver that.
A higher number of online sales were coming from rural areas that were not serviced by a bricks and mortar store, he said.
Overall, Briscoe's sales rose 2.9 percent to $167.4 million in the fourth quarter despite tough trading conditions that led to aggressive discounting.
For the 13 week ended Jan. 25, homeware sales rose just over 1 percent to $113.1 million while sporting goods sales lifted 7 percent to $54.3 million.
That resulted in unaudited sales for the year of $507.1 million, an increase of 4.9 percent, mainly led by a boost in revenue from Rebel Sports. On a same-store basis, group sales for the year rose 4.8 percent.
Duke, who recently refused comment on speculation he would make a takeover bid for the troubled Pumpkin Patch chain of which he is a minor shareholder and director, said he was satisfied with the sales, margins and overall performance for the final quarter of the year in a market which continues to be driven by aggressive promotional activity.
"Just how tough trading conditions have been is clear from recent announcements by other listed retailers," he said. "Our trading was subdued through November and during the lead up to Christmas but it revived significantly post-Christmas and throughout January."