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Point of Sales Tracking|Belgium|English

Retail in general: Belgian non-food market keeps on declining


We noticed a significant decline in non-food sales during the third quarter of 2016: an overall decline in sales value of -3.1% in the third quarter, compared to the same period last year. The comparison is based on the sum of all non-food markets measured by GfK POS Measurement.

Unfortunately, the non-food market lost during the third quarter of 2016, but we don’t need to be too pessimistic: several markets grew strongly during the last quarter. 

The Telecom market kept on booming, partially thanks to the annual release of the new iPhone (+20.6%). At the same time we noticed a rise in smartwatch sales. Although it is still a niche market, brands like Apple, Fitbit, Garmin and Samsung noted a double digit growth during the last quarter.

Furthermore, the Domestic appliances sector is in the black. Take a look at the Major Domestic Appliances sector’s growth, for example. Washing machines and tumble dryers keep on surprising. Within the cooling category, the consumer is not afraid to spend big money on American fridges and within the cooking department, the steam cooking hype is not yet over. Small Domestic Appliances continues its growth with low oil deep fryers and handsticks (+5.4%).

Markets that show less positive numbers are again the IT and Office market (-11.6%), due to a lack of demand and customers turning to higher spending on large screen smartphone products. The Consumer Electronics market also disappointed during the third quarter (-8.3%). After a successful second quarter, driven by the Euro Championships Football, July sales dropped dramatically compared to the previous year.

Other markets noticed some difficulties as well during this third quarter, but that was mainly due to bad results in September. Fashion ended the quarter with a loss (-9.2%). Stationery hoped to make up for the previous quarters but now looks back on a disappointing back-to-school period (-4.6%). 

Furthermore, the Media & Entertainment market keeps on shrinking (-6.7%).  In Music, the third quarter is dominated by the Tomorrowland compilation and this year is no exception. Unfortunately, other compilations do not follow this trend. With regards to the Gaming market, consumers seem to postpone their console purchases, anticipating the release of new consoles in 2017.

On the other hand, Home Improvement managed to turn the tide. After a disappointing second quarter, we noticed excellent results in the third quarter (+5.4%). Even the badly suffering paint category succeeded to grow again last quarter. 

The exciting end of year period is now ahead of us! Let’s wait and see how markets will evolve during the important last quarter of the year.

Wim Boesmans - Head of POS Measurement


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Wim Boesmans
Wim Boesmans