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Primark’s E-Commerce (Or Lack Of)

We all know that a multitude of businesses, both large and small, are struggling during this time. Many are forced to do whatever they can to stay afloat, from redundancies to permanently closing stores being the only feasible solutions.

This week I read an interesting article from the BBC that stated that: “Clothing giant Primark has gone from making £650m in sales a month to nothing”.

For some reason, Primark has never entered into e-commerce. Apparently, this is because they would not be able to keep prices as low as they are. But, I wonder if at a time like this, they begin to question that decision. Many other retail giants, such as ASOS, New Look and Zara are continuing to sell successfully online. However, others (including Next and TK Maxx) have done the opposite and closed down their online operations. I think in this situation, many brands are making the tough decision on what services they can realistically handle in a safe way.

So, have Primark missed a trick? I am not sure. In some ways yes. In my hours of boredom I definitely would have bought several organisers, throw pillows, maybe a top or jeans and hundreds of candles by now. But for them, despite the high demand, it simply isn’t a wide business decision.

Primark have lost a huge amount of money as a result of zero sales in the last month. Being online is imperative for all brands, whether that is social media or the ability to sell online. I’m sure setting up e-commerce in this climate is near impossible, but I wonder if it will kickstart something for Primark. Who knows, they may figure out a way to keep their prices low whilst venturing online, meaning if this ever happens again (fingers crossed it doesn’t) they will be prepared and have some sales to keep them somewhat balanced.

People love Primark. Heck, I love Primark. Their reputation might survive this climate, but their business is another matter. Without any sales, and bills to still pay, it will be interesting to see how Primark survives this turn of events.

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