Magazines display shelf generic

Independent retailers are reporting a drop in sales of bumper editions of weekly magazines after customers claim they can’t pay the extra cost.

While such editions have the potential to drive more footfall into independent stores, retailers expressed concerns around the increasing frequency and subsequent price hikes of bumper issues, claiming customers were being pushed away.

Graham Doubleday, of Doubleday Newsagents in Mossley, Ashton-under- Lyne, told betterRetailing his sales have dipped as a result.

“Bumper issues of weekly titles are hurting our sales, as whenever it occurs, we sell fewer copies of those titles,” he said. “Customers just don’t pick them up as much.”

Doubleday added that almost every week in June, he received multiple bumper issues of UK weekly bestsellers, up to £1 more expensive than their standard edition.

“The frequency of bumper editions is becoming a problem,” he said. “I have to put a bumper issue of titles such as Best, Bella and Woman on the shelf almost every week.”

Hitesh Pandya, of Toni’s News in Ramsgate, Kent, added: “People are watching every penny due to inflation. Magazines and newspapers are not a necessity for them. In the past one and half months, I have lost 3% to 5% on category sales because people cannot justify any additional cost.”

Frontline and Hearst were approached for comment.

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