By Jonathan Davies
Strong online sales gave John Lewis a boost in the run-up to Christmas, the retailer has said.
Total like-for-like sales were up by 4.8% to £777m in the five weeks to 27 December. In-store sales were flat, but there was a 19% rise in online sales.
John Lewis' click-and-collect service was hugely popular during the period, with such orders accounting for 56% of its online sales, overtaking home delivery.
Andy Street, John Lewis managing director, said: "This year confirmed the new shape of trade for Christmas, with an early peak at the end of November driven by Black Friday and last minute gift buying."
Black Friday, which took place on 28 November, brought John Lewis its strongest week of sales in 150 years of trading. But figures released last week showed that the one-day discount extravaganza actually harmed John Lewis' sales in the week running up to Christmas.
Sales of electrical goods, which are typically the focus of Black Friday discounts, were up 6.8% compared with the five-week period last year.
Homeware was up 2.3%, but there was stronger growth in fashion and beauty - John Lewis said online sales helped the department to grow 7.8%.
The announcement marks the start of a week of announcements for big British retailers. The likes of Marks & Spencer and Tesco are due to issue trading updates for the Christmas period later this week.
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