Marks and Spencer
Marks & Spencer’s online sales fell by 8.1%

Apparent problems with a new website platform at Marks & Spencer have helped drag down the store's quarterly sales figures - M& recorded an 8.1% decrease in sales for the 13 weeks to 28 June.

Non-food sales were down 1.5% in the quarter, marking the twelfth consecutive quarterly drop within the clothing and homeware departments.

M&S's food sales increased 1.7%.

M&S's new website was launched in February. Some six million customers that were registered on the old site had to re-register, and were then faced with further obstacles, in the form of problems with the new site's navigation.

Chief executive Marc Bolland said "as anticipated the settling in of the new M& site has had an impact on sales".

However he took the opportunity to talk up an "improvement in clothing", despite that particular sector falling by 0.6%.

"We are pleased that the Womenswear business was in growth, driven by full price sales, in line with our increased focus on margin," he said

Overall, UK total sales for the brand were up slightly by 0.3%.

M&S foodhalls have retained a loyal following among a certain demographic. However, recent reports found that sales at Morrison's have been equalled by budget food retailers Aldi and Lidl, as intense competition sweeps across the supermarket retailing sector.

"Our Food business had another great quarter, continuing to outperform the market, through our focus on differentiation through quality and innovation," continued Bolland.

Shares for the company in early trading rose by around 0.7% to reach 436.4p.

Earlier in 2014, Bolland took a 26% pay cut following another year in which the retailer saw profits dip as he and his colleague missed out on performance related bonuses.

M&S's profits have fallen for three straight years - the timeframe by which Bolland promised to turn the brand around.