Yorkshire manufacturers are to benefit from a £1.675bn boost as they increasingly shun retailers and wholesalers and instead sell their goods directly to consumers.
Data published in the a Barclays report shows that two in three manufacturers in the region have switched to selling directly to the public over the last five years in one of the largest shake-ups the industry has seen in its history.
The Going direct: Is direct to consumer selling set to revolutionise the manufacturing sector? report shows retail and wholesale markets to be under mounting pressure with Direct to Consumer (DTC) market now worth 16 per cent of all manufacturing sales nationally and set to soar to £13bn by 2025.
Yorkshire’s DTC sales have soared by 36 per cent since 2014 with UK manufacturers who have invested in a DTC sales strategy having benefited from increased revenue, growth in their customer base and increased speed to market.
Lee Collinson, Head of Manufacturing at Barclays, said: “The rise in businesses selling direct to customers is one of the biggest changes the manufacturing industry has seen in generations.
“As companies go it alone, bypassing wholesalers and retailers, they are increasingly embracing social media and digital channels to advertise and sell their products direct from the factory, and then managing the sales, distribution and after-care themselves.
“It’s a massive shift and the rewards are potentially huge, with nearly half of companies selling DTC reporting an increase in revenues as a result, along with a bigger customer base and the ability to personalise products.”
Sportswear giant Nike became the latest big brand to launch their own direct sales channel last year, ‘Nike Direct’, whereas start-ups such as Eve Mattresses and Harry’s razors began as DTC brands and have now expanded to selling into shops.
Technology has been a key driver in the adoption of DTC with nearly all manufacturers across the country now selling directly through their own websites. Social media is also of increasing importance to manufacturers.