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Halfords grows web sales as in-store struggles

Car accessories and leisure goods retailer Halfords Group reported an increase in web sales despite tough in-store trading conditions...

Car accessories and leisure goods retailer Halfords Group reported an increase in web sales despite tough in-store trading conditions.

According to the firm, retail online sales in the 13 weeks to 1 July were up 9.2%, with 86.7% collected in store.

The company has been improving its e-commerce set-up since 2008, when Halfords started to develop a multi-channel capability to improve service, drive profitability and differentiate the brand.

More recently, Halfords has invested in automating back-end system and business process testing to halve the time it takes to deliver new business functionality.

Retail sales in the latest Halfords results were down 0.5%, with spending on car enhancement down 10% and car maintenance down 2.2%. Like-for-like cycling sales were up 11.5%.

The group said it was continuing to trade "effectively in a difficult environment for UK consumers", but warned its profit margins for the full year would be hit.

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