Scotland business

Scottish retailers see slight rise in December shoppers

Shopping mall Image copyright PA

Scottish retailers have said they are encouraged by a slight rise in shopper numbers in December.

Figures from the Scottish Retail Consortium (SRC) showed footfall increased by a fraction - 0.2% - compared with a year ago.

Christmas sales and cheaper petrol helped boost the number of people going into Scotland's shops.

It was significantly above the 4.2% dip for November and is the best footfall performance since April last year.

SRC director David Lonsdale said: "The growth in shopper numbers last month may only have been a smidgen higher than in the same period the year before, however it comes as welcome relief after declining figures in each of the previous seven months.

"The challenge for our town centres will be turning this into a more sustained uptick in the months ahead, particularly as the popularity of online shopping and click-and-collect services continues to soar, providing ever greater choice and convenience for customers.

"The challenge for retailers, as ever, is to turn browsing into buying and we await figures later this week to see if higher footfall leads to a commensurate rise in the total value of retail sales."