Ikea UK has reported annual sales of £1.97bn in its 2018 full-year – up 5.9% on the previous year – after 12 months in which it invested both online and offline to offer the seamless service its customers now demand.

The home furnishings retailer, which is ranked Top250 in IRUK Top500 research, says online sales rose by 14.4% to represent 15.5% of total sales during the year to August 31 2018. Visitor numbers increased both online and in-store: 59.8m (4.5%) people visited its UK stores, while its website received 199.3m (+13.4%) visits.

“Our stores will always be an important part of the Ikea brand when it comes to inspiration, touching and feeling our products and this is reflected in the increase in visitation of +4.5% on last year,” said Javier Quiñones, country retail manager at Ikea UK. Investment in stores included a total revamp of Ikea Nottingham and a reworking of the Milton Keynes textiles stores. Since the year-end it has opened its first city centre store in the UK, on London’s Tottenham Court Road, However, added Quiñones: “We know that the role of the store is changing. People want to shop in a…