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UK subscription box segment continues to expand

The subscription box market continues to grow in Britain with a new report from Royal Mail saying that the market should be worth £1.8 billion by 2025. That comes as it doubled by 2020 compared to 2017 with spend of almost £1.4 billion and 88 million separate deliveries. 

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Moss Bros’s Moss Box

Interest in subscription boxes does vary across the country, however. Some 45% of Londoners are signed up to at least one — the area with the most engagement — followed by 37% and 36% of shoppers in the West Midlands and Northern Ireland, respectively. That said, those in the Northeast who are signed up almost likely to be interested in multiple boxes with 5.2 per person on average, ahead of the five per person for London.

And as many as 76% of subscription box shoppers are planning to either continue or increase their subscription services in the future. The fact that only 24% of subscription box shoppers said they intended to cancel their subscriptions any time soon, shows a high level of loyalty.

Royal Mail also said retailers are looking to make subscription boxes more popular by introducing more flexibility. For example, they’re increasingly looking to offer ‘holidays’ for when the recipient either doesn’t need any more of that item or if they’re going to be away.

Regular deliveries of items chosen by or for the consumer have become very popular in the beauty sector with Birchbox, Lookfantastic, Beauty Pie, Glossybox, Cohorted, Meebox and many more all carving out market share.

But the channel is also growing in the fashion sector with names such as Stitch Fix, Moss Box (by Moss Bros), Lookiero, Sock Butler and others entering the fray. Here, the subscription trend often meshes with the rise of fashion rental.

The Royal Mail report also said that such services are becoming increasingly sustainable as UK shoppers continue to embrace eco issues.

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