According to the latest SRC-KPMG Retail Sales Monitor, January saw total Scottish sales increase by 4.3% compared with January 2013, when they had increased by 2.1%.
The monthly monitor showed that like-for-like sales increased by 2.5% on last January, when they had increased by 1.1%. Taking account of shop price deflation at 1.0%, January total sales were up 5.4% in real terms.
Growth in Scotland was slightly below the UK in January. As for the UK, January's total sales growth in Scotland was much stronger than December's. The three-month average was 1.6%, back in line with the twelve-month average of 1.7%.
David Lonsdale, Director of the Scottish Retail Consortium, said: "Scottish retailers will take heart from these sales figures, which represent a strong start to the year. They build on a generally positive 2013 and compensate significantly for the slightly poorer sales we reported in December 2013.
"Particularly strong results were seen in clothing, furniture and other non-food items such as electricals. When Scottish retailers have got their offer right, consumers have been enthusiastic about taking advantage of promotions, as well as buying from the new ranges in store. All non-food categories performed well in January.
"Food has performed slightly less well. However, over the last three months, food performance has been slightly above that in the rest of the UK. All Scottish retailers will be working hard on their offer to maintain the good momentum we have seen this month."