Busy first half of year & continued optimism for UK trade professionals

UK tradesmen and women remain optimistic for the next 12 months following a busy first half of the year, according to multi-channel retailer, Screwfix.

The majority (85%) of plumbers, electricians, builders, carpenters and other tradesmen questioned in the latest Trade Pulse* report, say they expect business to remain at the same level or to improve over the next 12 months, with more than a third currently busier than expected and nearly half saying business is now, at this time better than 12 months ago.

The optimism tradesmen feel for the future of their businesses also extends to the UK’s general economy, with 50% believing it will improve over the next 12 months and nearly two thirds thinking the UK’s economy has improved over the past year.

Andrew Livingston, CEO of Screwfix, comments: “It is really encouraging that so many tradesmen are both optimistic for the future and are maintaining busy work schedules. We’ve certainly experienced how busy they are first-hand through our store network. Our five minute Click & Collect service has also grown significantly as many of our customers choose this option to limit time off site. In fact, 70% of all online orders are now click and collect and we’ve now received six million orders since we launched the service in 2011.

“As a supplier to the trade it’s crucial we continually develop our service to meet the needs of busy trade professionals. We now have 412 stores in the UK and will be opening a further 45 stores this year to enable our customers to get to us as early as possible.

The Trade Pulse report also showed that just 4% of the trade are not working, which is a decrease of 1% on the same period in 2014.