29 December 2021

2021 has almost come to an end. A year in which Covid-19 still played a significant role in our day-to-day lives, the transition period of Brexit ended, and the Ever Given blocked the Suez canal. Despite all the hurdles, UK garden centres remained open during the lockdown and (online) sales went up for the second year in a row.

Let’s round 2021 up by looking at the UK year-to-date garden centre sales to discover the opportunities for 2022.

Total garden centre sales

Industry data from the GCA’s Barometer of Trade report shows that total garden centre sales in 2021 went up by 30,5% compared to 2020. The highest spike in sales was measured between March and May 2021 when non-essential retail needed to close, leaving garden centres in a monopoly position.

This increase in in-store and online sales shows that gardening is still growing in popularity, and consumers spend more on average. 

Top 5 products to sell in 2022

The increase in sales is detected across all 13 categories mentioned in GCA’s Barometer of Trade report. The five product categories that went up the most compared to 2020 are:

  1. Garden furniture and barbecues sales went up by 59.9% in 2021 compared to 2020 due to the consumer trends of entertaining outdoors and purchasing ahead for the summer.
  2. Clothing sales went up by 39,7% due to the forced closings of the non-essential stores during the lockdown.
  3. Outdoor plants sales went up by 36,9%, which is in line with the success of garden furniture and barbecues.
  4. Houseplants sales went up by 32,4%. The popularity of houseplants continues to increase. Now more than ever, people are looking for ways to make their living area/home office warm and cosy with a dose of Vitamin G.
  5. Gifts sales went up by 32,1% for several reasons, including a more comprehensive in-store range.

The remaining categories performing well are: food hall / farm shop (+27,01%), garden sundries (+23,8%), hard landscaping (+22,8%), pets & aquatics (21,5%), and seeds & bulbs (+15,5%). In-store and online sales of Christmas decorations increased by 1,08% compared to 2022 and all other products went up by 39% in total.

To conclude

So what can we learn from these trends? With the ongoing developments, these trends will likely continue in 2022. By focusing on the top 5 trending product groups, you can grow your in-store and online sales in the upcoming year. Online sales went up by 21,8% compared to 2021, so now more than ever, it’s the right time to start selling plants, garden furniture and barbecues online.

Most of all, these figures hold great promise for you to grow in 2022. As every year, our team will be ready to help you. 

2021 UK garden retail sales roundup
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